An 18-year-old University of Minnesota student was raped in her superblock dorm room early Sunday morning, University police said.
The alleged attacker lives in the same residence hall, which police would not identify, and was an acquaintance of the woman, Deputy police Chief Chuck Miner said.
Police collected information on the suspect from the woman, who came to the University police station to report the incident later that night, according to a University police report.
Police have identified a suspect and are currently investigating the crime, Miner said.
In 2008 there were 11 residential reports of forcible sex offenses, according to UMPD statistics. The figure includes rape as well as forcible fondling.
The National Center for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder recently reported that only 18 percent of sexual assaults are committed by strangers.
“Whereas most of us have been raised to fear a stranger sexual assault … in fact it’s the non-stranger sexual assault that’s the most common kind,” Donna Dunn, executive director of the Minnesota Coalition Against Sexual Assault said.
Dunn said people can become dangerously complacent in comfortable, familiar settings.
“We don’t necessarily want to evaluate the people we know as whether they’re dangerous. That’s something we tend to resist,” Dunn said. “Sometimes the comfort of a dorm can allow people to put their guard down.”
Dunn said intervention is another key to preventing sexual assault.
“People need to be addressing what looks like the beginning of perpetrating behavior,” Dunn said. “Especially on college campuses, I think we really need to empower bystanders to intervene when they see somebody who routinely … push[es] boundaries.”
UMN students have traveled to Florida colleges to collaborate with students on various projects.
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