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Victim Gender, Number of Perpetrators, and Interpersonal Interaction in Stranger Rape: An Analysis of Direct and Moderator Effects


  • Samantha Lundrigan

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Humanities and Social Sciences, Anglia Ruskin University, Cambridge, UK
    • Correspondence to: Samantha Lundrigan, Department of Humanities and Social Sciences, Anglia Ruskin University, East Road, Cambridge CB1 1PT, UK.


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This study examined the direct and moderator effects of number of perpetrators and gender of victim on interpersonal behaviour in stranger rape. Crime scene behaviours representative of hostility, involvement, control, and offender penetration in rape were examined for 496 UK, police-recorded cases of stranger rape. Cases were grouped according to victim gender (male or female) and number of perpetrators (lone or multiple). This resulted in four groups (lone female, lone male, multiple female, and multiple male) with 124 cases in each. Binary logistic regression and one-way analysis of variance were used to investigate the relationships between the two predictor variables and 11 criterion variables.

Significant direct effects of number of perpetrators were found whereby multiple perpetrator offences were more likely to involve violence and less likely to involve involvement interactions than lone perpetrator offences. Significant direct effects of victim gender were also found whereby male victims were more likely than female victims to experience hostile interactions and be threatened with a weapon and were less likely to experience offender penetration and involvement interactions. Significant crossover interactions were also found for four hostility variables. The utility of the findings are discussed in relation to crime prevention, victim support, and offender intervention. Copyright © 2013 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.