Sexual Assault, Abuse, and Rape by College Athletes

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Sexual assault, abuse, and rape by athletes is a devastating crime. These crimes by themselves are horrendous, but when committed by athletes there are many different factors involved. Through extensive research this paper will show contributing factors that may result in assault, abuse, or rape by athletes. Special treatment for athletes throughout their career, belief in sexual male dominance, and the role of alcohol are all important factors. Other crucial factors are the attitudes and responses of: society, juries, victims, coaches, and athletes. This paper will explore all these issues and show that changes need to be made in all the areas to combat the growing percentages of sport assault, abuse, and rape against women.

Sexual abuse by athletes is evident at every level, from high school team members to professional players. In the last decade, some of the most noted athletes in big league sports have been accused of sexually abusing or attacking women. In many cases, however, the woman decided not to bring it to public trial, and charges were dropped:

• Gerald Perry, a Denver Broncos offensive tackle, was acquitted of a rape charge (but agreed to undergo counseling).

• Aaron Pryor, former junior-welterweight champion of the world was arrested and charged with rape and keeping a woman tied up for twenty-four hours. The most serious charges were dropped. Pryor pleaded to lesser charges, but will not have a criminal record.

• Two University of Colorado football players were charged with rape and were acquitted, but then left school.

• Tony McCoy, defensive tackle at the University of Florida, was arrested and charged with sexual battery for holding a student at knife point.

• Mike Tyso...

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