Types of Rape

Acquaintance Rape

** This is actually the most common type of Rape according to statistics.

Rape committed by a perpetrator known to the victim. Teenagers and young women are especially vulnerable to acquaintance rape. Many acquaintance rapes are initiated by the perpetrator with the intention of having sex. When the victim resists the perpetrator’s advances, the perpetrator uses more aggressive measures to ensure compliance. This is the type of rape that date rape falls under.

Marital Rape (also known as Partner Rape)

Contrary to popular belief, rape can occur in marriages. This is often a difficult fact to reconcile with the traditional view of marriage, which asserts that a wife cannot deny sexual relations with her husband. Until recently, many state rape statutes excluded spouses, making it legal for a husband to rape his wife.

Stranger Rape

Rape by a person who is a complete stranger to the victim. Contrary to popular belief, statistics show that stranger rape occurs substantially less frequently than acquaintance rape.

Gang Rape

This type of rape is perpetuated by a group of offenders that “take turns” assaulting a victims. Group members may also participate by forcing the victim to submit, (by physical force or threat), while other group members commit the rape. The motivation for a gang rapist is to assert his “manhood” and power, and gain acceptance by a group of his peers. While it is feasible for women to commit gang rape, research supports to the notion that males represent the overwhelming majority as culprits of gang and other types of rape.

Statutory Rape

This type of rape is age-related. In this case, sexual actions with a person below a minimum age is considered illegal in all cases. Often this age is 12. There is often another age, known as the age of consent. Sexual acts with a person above the minimum age but below the age of consent may be considered rape depending on the perpetrator. Specific ages are specified by state.


Incest is a type of rape dictated by the relationship between the two parties. When the two parties involved in the sex act are closely related (in other words, they are family), it is often rape. Examples of incest include:

  • Parents and children
  • Uncles and nieces or nephews
  • Aunts and nieces or nephews

Laws vary by state as to specifically what constitutes incest.

  • Family members account for 7% of rapists