Prison Rape Epidemic


If I were to ask you to name a country with the highest prison rape statistics…what would you say?

The United States would most likely not be one of your answers, but you would be terribly wrong. The U.S. has one of the most crowded prison systems and one of the high prison rape statistics compared to other countries. The problem continues to be complete LACK of awareness by the outside world.

Male victims make up 86%, while women make up 13% of prison rape victims. The statistics of male survivors are as follows: 54% were sexually assaulted by another prisoner, 17% were assaulted by a prison official, 3% by a non-custody staff member, and 25% refused to reveal who assaulted them. The statistics of female survivors are as follows: 12% were sexually assaulted by another prisoner, 48% were assaulted by a prison official, 26% by a non-custody staff member, and 14% refused to reveal who assaulted them. Out of these men and women, 6% of them were assaulted for the first time when they were under the age of 21, 36% were assaulted by more than one person, 37% were assaulted more than once, only 51% reported the assault, and an atrocious 3% of the reported assaults resulted in discipline to the abuser.

The following story illustrates what goes on everyday in prisons all the around the U.S.:

16 year-old Rodney Hulin was sentenced to eight years in an adult facility in Texas for setting a dumpster on fire. In prison, he became an easy target, with a 5’2”, 125-pound frame. He was raped multiple times by other inmates and reported the assaults to doctors and prison officials on numerous occasions, pleading for help. In particular, using the prison’s established administrative procedures, he requested to be removed from the general prison population. His pleas were rejected. Prison officials decided that Hulin did not meet the “emergency grievance criteria” and told him that “[t]his happens every day, learn to deal with it. It’s no big deal.” Unable to tolerate any further abuse, Hulin hanged himself one year later, and died after lying in a coma for four months.

How aware do you think people on the outside are of this problem? And with their little awareness, how much do you think they actually care?


Article Source: Just Detention/ Stop Prisoner Rape

Picture Source: Ethics Alarms



  1. In my opinion, this absence of knowledge of what goes on within prisons is unacceptable and should be dealt with. A person who commits a crime and is sentenced to jail time is already aware that their lives are about to dramatically change. But to now have to worry about protecting yourself inside not only from other inmates but also from officers who should be placing safety measures within the jail is unnecessary and goes against what the United States is all about. The U.S. has, for every level of crime, a punishment, which equals the damage done. For a minor who committed a crime which could be seen as insignificant compared to others, to complain about being raped and be told that these actions are ordinary and typical show neglect and carelessness on the part of the prison officials and should be remedied to provide safety to inmates to preserve whatever few rights they have left.

  2. I was not aware of these statistics and I agree that there is a lack of awareness throughout America. I was surprised to find out that the prisons in the United States have one of the highest rape statistics. A public outcry regarding the treatment of prisoners has never been the topic of protests or fundraisers, but maybe if this information was more available something could be done to better the present situation. I was also surprised that the rape statistics were higher in the male inmate population. But more importantly, it is very disturbing to see that 17% of the male victims were sexual assaulted by prison officials, and that 48% of female victims were sexually assaulted by a prison official and another 26% of the female victims were sexually assaulted by a staff member. In the very least something must be done to ensure that inmates are not abused by the very officers surrounding them who are supposed to be upholding the law.

  3. People are not very knowledgeable about the rape statistics in prison. I find it shocking at the high numbers of rape that occur. People are aware that rape does occur in prisons, but they are not informed about the excessive rates. This is a sad thought. I feel that there are some people who are aware of these statistics and they attempt to spark interest and anger in order to invoke reform. However, I feel that there are people who do know about this terrible problem and do not do a thing to incite change. People jokingly say that a skinny, tiny person in jail will end up being someone’s bitch in prison. As much as people joke about it, it is not a laughing matter because it is a serious issue. Some people might not care about these statistics because they have the wrong impression that all people in jail or prison deserve what is coming to them. Others might feel that certain groups like child molesters should be raped so they know what it feels like. Nevertheless, rape is not a joke and awareness should spread in order to better the community. Prisoners are people to and deserve to be treated humanely.

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