Penn State Police are investigating an incident where a female student was forcibly raped by a known male in a residence hall on campus, Penn State Police Chief Tyrone Parham said via email Thursday.
The incident — or incidents — was reported to police on Wednesday and occurred sometime between Jan. 1 and Feb. 10, according to the University Police and Fire Daily Activity Log.
Parham said police have identified a male in connection with the incident and the investigation is ongoing.
Since Aug. 27, 2012, local police have fielded 22 separate reports of sexual assault and one report of a potential sexual assault from Dec. 16, in which the woman who reported the assault could not remember whether it was sexual in nature.
Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape spokeswoman Kristen Houser said that in almost all cases of sexual assault, the person who was assaulted has some sort of relationship with the person who assaulted them.
“It’s much easier to gain trust through someone the person knows than someone they don’t know,” Houser said.
Houser said that in cases where the two individuals know each other, it’s more important for someone to “trust their gut” in knowing something is wrong, rather than take steps to reduce the risk of them being assaulted.
“Risk reduction is often much more geared towards stranger assaults,” Houser said.
But answers for the growing problem aren’t of abundance, even for the experts.
“There’s not a single reason why someone commits rape,” Houser said. “Different offenders are motivated by different things so it’s difficult to talk about this as a uniform issue.”