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One in five collegiettes™ will be a victim of sexual assault in college. But what is sexual assault? What "counts" as rape? Not all sexual assaults are forced – some are coerced – and sometimes the victims are men. These are just a couple scenarios that may soon constitute rape under federal law.

After increased criticism from law enforcement officials and women's advocacy groups, an updated, comprehensive definition of rape will go to an advisory group for approval in two weeks.

A subcommittee of the FBI voted last month to recommend the following definition: “Penetration, no matter how slight, of the vagina or anus with any body part or object, or oral penetration by a sex organ of another person, without the consent of the victim.”

The Uniform Crime Report Subcommittee also proposed to remove “forcible” from the crime’s title.

This new definition needs to be approved by the Advisory Policy Board on December 6-7 and then, receive final approval from FBI Director Robert Mueller.

Since the 1920s, rape has been defined as the “carnal knowledge of a female forcibly and against her will.” Countless cases of sexual assault are not shown in the federal government’s yearly crime report because they do not fit this description.
 

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