FARGO - A one-week survey of sexual violence across North Dakota counted 101 victims who used crisis hotlines or received services such as therapy, shelter or legal assistance.
CAWS North Dakota, a coalition of 20 domestic violence and sexual assault crisis intervention centers in the state, conducted the point-in-time survey Feb. 12-19.
CAWS said the actual number of people receiving sexual violence services during that week likely exceeded what was reported.
Of the victims counted, 19 were assaulted by their intimate partner and 13 were accompanied by an advocate to the hospital. Due to a lack of staff and financial resources, one victim's request for services was not met, CAWS reported.
This was the second annual point-in-time survey. However, CAWS did not provide the results from the inaugural survey in 2017.
CAWS data from all of 2017 shows there were 1,500 victims served by crisis intervention centers throughout the state and 67 percent of the crimes were reported to law enforcement.
The vast majority of the victims were women and the majority of assailants were men, though there were 61 female assailants. At least 364 victims were under the age of 18, and 24 percent of new victims were people with disabilities.
At least 65 percent of the assaults were rape, which is less than what CAWS reported in 2016, with 73 percent of assaults being rape. In 2016, there were 1,388 sexual assault victims served in North Dakota.
Krista Knutson, sexual assault program coordinator for CAWS, said that with high-profile cases and the #MeToo movement getting media attention, conversations on sexual violence at the local level are likely to increase.
"Recognizing sexual violence and where to access available services are hopefully topics that are on their way to becoming less stigmatized, which could reflect an increase in services sought," Knutson said in a statement.