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News Release

For Immediate Release
February 25, 2011

Sandra Matheson, Director, Office of Victim/Witness Assistance
(603) 271-3671

Press Conference – Response to Adult Sexual Assault Study
Monday, February 28, 2011, 11:30 am
Attorney General's Office
33 Capitol Street, Room 302, Concord, NH
Study takes a Critical Look at the Criminal Justice Response to Adult Victims of Sexual Assault in NH
Data collected by researchers finds only 3% of offenders were convicted or pled guilty

[Concord, NH] – On Monday, February 28th at 11:30 am, a press conference will be held at the Attorney General's Office to discuss the findings of a new study titled "The Reality of Sexual Assault in New Hampshire." The press conference will include Attorney General Michael Delaney, Colonel Robert Quinn, Director, New Hampshire State Police, Grace Mattern, Executive Director of the New Hampshire Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence, and Cindy Cole, RN, Exeter Hospital and a member of the Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE) Program Advisory Board. The speakers will address the results of the study and talk about current projects underway that aim to improve the criminal justice system response to adult victims of sexual assault.

This report was compiled by the Research Committee of the Governor's Commission on Domestic and Sexual Violence. The exploratory study was designed to examine how the criminal justice system responds to adult female victims of sexual assault. The report shows that misinformation, myths and stereotypes about what is "real rape" or who is a real or deserving victim plays a major role in the outcome of an adult sexual assault case. According to data made available from law enforcement for 2006, only 13 out of 344 adult sexual assault offenders or 3% were known to be convicted or pled guilty. During the process of interviewing professionals from different disciplines it became clear that there are inconsistent responses to adult female sexual assault across the state and a need for a more collaborative integrated approach.

The findings of the report will be presented and current efforts to address the concerns will be discussed. Media are encouraged to attend.

For additional information, please contact: Sandra Matheson, Director, Office of Victim/Witness Assistance, Attorney General's Office (603) 271-3671.

New Hampshire Department of Justice | 33 Capitol Street | Concord, NH | 03301
Telephone: 603-271-3658