Here’s an interesting article on the recent rape cases involving 11-year-old girls:
Tracy Clark Flory interviewed an expert from the Crimes Against Children Research Center and he said this (his words are in quotations):
Gang rape is very rare — but, interestingly enough, he says juveniles make up the majority of offenders in those cases. “Juveniles are much more likely to commit almost all of their criminal acts in crowds,” he explains. “Peer pressure is strong at that age and resistance skills are not.”
But the bad news is:
Now for the especially sad news: It isn’t rare for a sexual assault victim to be so very young. Stunningly, 67 percent of all sexual assault cases — from forcible fondling to rape — involve underage victims, and 34 percent are under the age of 12, according to a report by the U.S. Department of Justice. [Yeah, just take a moment to let that soak in.] The majority are female, and “the risk of being the victim of forcible rape increased dramatically from age 10 to age 14, where it peaked,” the report says. As for the prevalence of child sexual abuse as a whole, it’s tough to nail down a reliable estimate, because it’s hugely underreported. Estimates range from 1.2 to 1.9 cases per 1,000 children. On a seemingly positive note, the number of substantiated cases is in a sharp decline — but he explains that doesn’t necessarily mean that the actual incidence of abuse is down.