(Submitted by Kristine Babiarz)
According to this information, a group of rapists in prison were interviewed on what they look for in a potential victim, and here are some interesting facts:
The first thing rapists look for in a potential victim is hairstyle. They are most likely to go after a woman with a ponytail, bun, braid or other hairstyle that can easily be grabbed. They are also likely to go after a woman with long hair. Women with short hair are not common targets.
The second thing rapists look for is clothing. They look for women whose clothing is easy to remove quickly. Many of them carry scissors around specifically to cut clothing.
They also look for women on their cell phone, searching through their purse, or doing other activities while walking because they are off–guard and can be easily overpowered.
Rapists are most likely to attack and rape in the early morning between 5 and 8:30 a.m.
The number one place women are abducted from or attacked is grocery store parking lots. The number two: office parking lots/garages. Number three is public restrooms.
The thing about these rapists is that they are looking to grab a woman and quickly move her to another location where they don‘t have to worry about getting caught.
Only two percent said they carried weapons because rape carries a three to five year sentence, but rape with a weapon is 15 to 20 years.
If you put up any kind of a fight at all, they get discouraged because it only takes a minute or two for them to realize that going after you isn‘t worth it because it will be time consuming.
They said they would not pick on women who have umbrellas, or other similar objects that can be used from a distance, in their hands. Keys are not a deterrent because you have to get really close to the attacker to use them as a weapon. So the idea is to convince these guys you’re not worth it.
Several defense mechanisms are: if someone is following behind you on a street or in a garage or is with you in an elevator or stairwell, look them in the face and ask them a question, like “What time is it?” Or make general small talk: “I can‘t believe it is so cold out here.” “We’re in for a bad winter.“ Now you‘ve seen his face and could identify him in a lineup. You lose your appeal as a target.
If someone is coming toward you, hold out your hands in front of you and yell “STOP“ or “STAY BACK!“ Most of the rapists said they‘d leave a woman alone if she yelled or showed that she would not be afraid to fight back. Again, they are looking for an easy target.
If you carry pepper spray (this instructor was a huge advocate of it and carries it with him wherever he goes), yell, “I have pepper spray,” and holding it out will be a deterrent.