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Permission, consent, approval are three simple freedoms that everyone possess. Imagine these freedoms being forcibly taken away. Rape is an example of how your consent or permission can be taken away. As defined by www.dictionary.com , rape is  unlawful sexual intercourse or any other sexual penetration of the vagina, anus, or mouth of another person, with or without force, by a sex organ, other body part, or foreign object, without the consent of the victim.  Here in the city of New Orleans, rape or sex crimes is affecting the city at an alarming rate. Sex crimes, amongst all crimes, are the most underreported.  People who are affected by these crimes range from every age, gender, race,and ethnicity. These past few years, the New Orleans Police Department have failed to investigate or bring punishment to these offenders.  The department ,special victim unit, that handle these cases currently has five detectives assigned. Victims have been left feeling defeated by the lack of help and support of policemen. The questions that lie here: ” Are police taking sex crimes seriously?”, “Are there a lack of funding to investigate these crimes?” and “Are police trained properly to handle sex crimes?”. According to www.nola.com , only 27 percent of rapes are reported to the police. The low percentage can be the cause of victims’ lack of trust in the police department. Unsolved rape cases in New Orleans are significantly outrageous. Demand for more  personal training and staff is needed in New Orleans.Unlawful acts, such as rape, are governed with laws and punishments. The laws of rape were made to establish what actually constitute rape. Rape is classified into battery, first, second and third degree.   According to https://www.nolasart.org/louisiana-sex-crime-statutes.html ” Rape is the act of anal, oral, or vaginal sexual intercourse with a male or female person committed without the person’s lawful consent. Emission is not necessary, and any sexual penetration, when the rape involves vaginal or anal intercourse, however slight, is sufficient to complete the crime.  For purposes of this Subpart, “oral sexual intercourse” means the intentional engaging in any of the following acts with another person: The touching of the anus or genitals of the victim by the offender using the mouth or tongue of the offender. Third degree rape is a rape committed upon a person sixty-five years of age or older or where the anal, oral, or vaginal sexual intercourse is deemed to be without lawful consent of the victim because it is committed under any one or more of the following circumstances: When the victim resists the act to the utmost, but whose resistance is overcome by force.When the victim is prevented from resisting the act by threats of great and immediate bodily harm, accompanied by apparent power of execution. When the victim is prevented from resisting the act because the offender is  armed with a dangerous weapon.When the victim is under the age of thirteen years.When two or more offenders participated in the act. When the victim is prevented from resisting the act  because the victim suffers from a physical or mental. (https://www.nolasart.org/louisiana-sex-crime-statutes.html ) Second degree rape is rape committed when the anal, oral, or vaginal sexual intercourse is deemed to be without the lawful consent of the victim because it is committed under any one or more of the following circumstances: When the victim is prevented from resisting the act by force or threats of physical violence under circumstances where the victim reasonably believes that such resistance would not prevent the rape. When the victim is incapable of resisting or of understanding  the nature of the act by reason of stupor or abnormal condition of the mind produced by a narcotic or anesthetic agent or other controlled dangerous substance administered by the offender and without the knowledge of the victim. ( https://www.nolasart.org/louisiana-sex-crime-statutes.html )According to https://www.nolasart.org/louisiana-sex-crime-statutes.html , Simple rape is a rape committed when the anal, oral, or vaginal sexual intercourse is deemed to be without the lawful consent of a victim because it is committed under any one or more of the following circumstances:When the victim is incapable of resisting or of understanding the nature of the act by reason of a stupor or abnormal condition of mind produced by an intoxicating agent or any cause and the offender knew or should have known of the victim’s incapacity.When the victim is incapable, through unsoundness of mind, whether temporary or permanent, or understanding the nature of the act and the offender knew or should have known of the victim’s incapacity. When the female victim submits under the belief that the person committing the act is her husband and such belief is intentionally induced by any artifice, pretense, or concealment practiced by the offender. Whoever commits the crime of simple rape shall be imprisoned, with or without hard labor, without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence, for not more than twenty-five years.Sexual battery is the intentional engaging in any of the following acts with another person where the offender acts without the consent of the victim, or where the act is consensual but the other person, who is not the spouse of the offender, has not yet attained fifteen years of age and is at least three years younger than the offender: The touching of the anus or genitals of the victim by the offender using any instrumentality or any part of the body of the offender. https://www.nolasart.org/louisiana-sex-crime-statutes.html In year 2018, rape is clearly defined, but before it was not always black and white.  The laws were reformed over time to match possible situations. There was always constant debate on whether consent of the victim was given. Consent was not legally defined by the law. Before most rape laws came into effect, rape cases were `hard to bring to court. Advancements in science and laws were made to help victims of rape. Consent of sexual activity is defined by law but vary from state to state. Rape kits are a major source of evidence that is not being used properly.  According to www.nola.com,” More than 1,300 rape kits collected from sexual assault victims across the state have not been tested for DNA evidence, a state report shows, with roughly one-third of the kits having sat untested for at least five years”.  New Orleans police are failing tremendously in basic procedures of handling sex crimes.  The New Orleans police department are not  thoroughly doing there job . According to www.nola.com,” Of the 1,333 untested kits listed in the report, four out of every five were collected at least a year ago, while nearly 200 were collected between 1988 and 2003″. Some rape kits are over a decade old.  The percentages of rape are steadily increasing .  According to  https://www.bestofneworleans.com ,  the U.S. Department of Justice found a backlog of more than 1,000 untested rape kits in NOPD storage. Many of the kits — which contain fragile DNA evidence collected from victims — were from as far back as the 1980s and ’90s.  Also, it has been recovered no follow up reports had been made by detectives. The lack of seriousness for these crimes has a backlog that is embarrassing to the justice system. After Katrina, rape and sexaul assualt became even more widespread. The most unsolved rape cases comes from the city of New Orleans. The New Orleans Police Special Victims Unit (SVU) has the most cold cases out of any department.Victims of rape are physically attacked ,  but most importantly mentally traumatized. If the victim decides to report a rape, steps are taken to help them. Victims have to endure a rape kit. This kit, a major source of evidence, can take hours to do. Once the rape kit is collected. The police has to question the victim. Victims have to explain continuously about their attacks. Reliving those moments can insure more  stress on victims.  Although rape may last a few minutes, but the trauma  it leaves can last a lifetime. Victims of rape lose a sense of security in themselves and hope in humanity. Some victims often feel embarrassed and ashamed for experiencing such horror. Many struggle with depression, anxiety, and post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Dealing with these mental illnesses can lead to drug and alcohol abuse. Victims often questions themselves. They begin to question what had they done to be attacked.  Victims sometimes isolate themselves from the world. Simple acts and gestures may cause victims to relive their rape. The feeling of helplessness becomes common to victims. It takes courageousness of the victim to report their attacks. Unfortunately, often times victims of sex crimes are  disappointed and failed by their police department. The ordeal can be often can be so great, therapy is suggested for the victim. Victims who cannot deal with the trauma, are most likely to commit suicide.  It has been reported that sixty percent of victims kill themselves after the case is left unsolved. Telephone hotlines and  rape crisis centers were made to help victims move forward with their lives. Men and women are affected by rape. One definite effect of rape is fear. The man or woman victim lives is in constant fear. Men rape,in particular, are far more underreported than women. Men are often too embarrassed to report their assault.  Especially, men who have been attacked by women. People automatically dismiss males for this type of attack. Some would even consider the male victim as “weak”. Many people of society are not always accepting of the truth. Some members of society believe men can not be raped. People would often call men liars or say “men should enjoy sex.”  This stigma forces men to question their manhood. Men often have to go through self-blame and humiliation.  Many are afraid to be labeled by society. Some men rather keep the tragedy a secret. The trauma can place a heavy weight on the victims’ shoulder. Correctional facility,military and as young boys men are most likely to experience a sexual assault. Men rape is a serious growing matter that needs to be addressed. Women are more sexually assaulted than men. Women are generally said to be easier targets. Study show women are most likely to be attacked by someone who are close them. Women, who know their attackers are less likely to go to the police. According to the Department of Justice, over 300,000 women are raped every year.   Barriers had to be broken, for women who were raped.  Women who reported raped were often shamed, called names, especially liar.   Rape laws were not always present to bring justice for victims. Rape laws are still being written as new situations arises. In this day and age, other factors have come into play such as the date rape drug. The predator targets women by possibly slipping the date rape drug( rohypnol) in to their drinks. Better known as the ruffle, gives victims temporary memory loss. The victim often can not remember what happened in the last 24 hours. The effects of the drug makes it harder for victims to find their attackers.  Some women are left behind with everyday remembrance of their attackers.  Babies and life threatening sexually transmitted diseases are sometimes left with women victims. Women are not always able to deal with effects of rape. Suicide is the option some women take when not being able to deal with the effects of the rape. In reality, almost everyone strives to be  a productive member of society. Everyone does not  have power or even the thought to hurt people. There are many  who desire to inflict harm on others. In the New Orleans community, we should strive to be proficient in catching these offenders. Rape is a  dire growing act of violence that is increasing in New Orleans. The New Orleans Police departments should not be unnotable. The efforts towards solving rape cases should be increased. Increase in employment training when handling sex crimes, and more detectives in the unit would help. NOPD lack of understanding for rape cases and sex crimes are causing more victims to be attacked. Offenders are still roaming the streets. Rape laws were made for a reason. It is now time for New Orleans Police Department to carry out justice.

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