What This NYPD Captain Said About Rape Exposes a Dangerous Myth

January 6th 2017

Almie Rose

A comment from the New York Police department on rape exposes a larger myth about sexual assault.

Captain Peter R. Rose, commanding officer of the NYPD's 94th precinct, was quoted in an article by Gwynne Hogan for DNA Info about a rise in rapes and attempted rapes in Brooklyn. Huffington Post reporter Ben Walsh highlighted Rose's comments regarding rape, inspiring ire and outrage from Twitter.

"True stranger rapes."

As shown above, Rose told Hogan, "Every rape should be investigated. I wish we could do more."

"Some of them were Tinder, some of them were hookup sites, some of theme were actually coworkers," he continued. "It's not a trend that we're too worried about because out of 13 [sex attacks], only two were true stranger rapes."

He later clarified in a community council meeting:

"They're not total abomination rapes where strangers are being dragged off the streets. If there's a true stranger rape, a random guy picks up a stranger off the street, those are the troubling ones. That person has, like, no moral standards."

ATTN: has reached out to the NYPD and will update when we hear back.

Rose's comments raised "major" concerns.

Rose's comment on "true stranger rape" outraged women, as Hogan noted in her article.

"The idea that 'this isn't some guy who's dangerous to women,' that in itself is a major window into the mentality that we are up against," Jane Manning of the National Organization for Women told Hogan. "If you have the commander of a precinct making comments like that, he’s setting a tone for all the officers of a unit about how seriously to take acquaintance rape cases."

A Twitter user brought up an important stat:

This is backed by RAINN (Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network), who report "7 out of 10 rapes are committed by someone known to the victim."

RAINN rape stats

The idea that rapists solely exist in dark alleyways ready to pounce on unsuspecting women is an outdated and even dangerous notion. "There is a common misconception that acquaintance rape is not as serious, not as criminal, and not as traumatic to the victim as stranger rape," the Rape Treatment Center at UCLA Medical Center proclaims on their website. "These are mistaken beliefs. Rape is a felony crime, regardless of the offender's relationship to the victim. Acquaintance rape is just as serious and just as devastating to the victim as stranger rape."

Twitter users were incensed:

According to RAINN, "1 out of every 6 American women has been the victim of an attempted or completed rape in her lifetime."