Radford provides help to sexual assault victims

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Kim Busch | kbusch@radford.edu

Sexual assault cases reported in Radford City get filed through the police department or the Women’s Resource Center of the New River Valley (WRC). Every 107 seconds someone is sexually assaulted in America. About 293,000 people are victims to this crime each year, nationally.

In Radford City alone, 93 cases of sexual assault were reported to the WRC, from just this past year; July through December; 37 of those cases involved children.

Response Coordinator Chris Durner, estimated that 25 percent, to one-third of cases, are not reported to the police or the WRC. “Out of all these cases, the children’s cases are always reported, because we have mandate reporting,” Durner said.

Nationally, 68 percent of sexual assaults are not reported to the police.

Here in Radford, hospitals have advocates who call the WRC and in some cases the police. Most often, in reports with children, the police and social services are involved. Durner also mentioned how they have had a larger amount of young boys get reported, rather than young girls.

Detective Carla Cross of the Radford City Police noted that they have filed 68 sexual assault cases within Radford since January of 2011, until now. That is including children. She has noticed that the awareness of these cases have gone up, as well.

When the police are involved, especially when it is asked for, for children, they regularly keep an eye on the victims until they seek help and that help is fulfilled. Places, like the WRC, provide special and free services to victims, and their families, who have gone through traumatic experiences, like sexual assault.

The WRC have about 150 volunteer providers and advocates. Whom of which, contact the WRC when sexual assault, and any other victims to violence, come into the hospital.

What may seem like a high number of sexual assault cases in the nation, here in Radford, reports have said to be getting better and there are a substantial amount of services that victims can seek for help or to regain strength.