Victims of different socioeconomic statues can be treated differently within the criminal justice system. Researchers have found victims of rape who are socially and educationally disadvantaged are less likely to withstand the criminal justice process. Skeggs (2005) states these women victims “may be unable to ‘tell’ themselves in appropriate ways; they do not have access to the right resources or techniques for performing propriety, and their cultures have already been defined as deviant” (Phipps, 2009, p.676). In addition, victims of rape who are of low socioeconomic class have a lower rate of reported crimes. These victims may feel that law enforcement may not believe them and that they themselves have caused their victimization. Being of a lower socioeconomic class, the perception of a victim’s creditability can be questioned by law enforcement. Also, researchers have argued that poor women may report accusations for monetary or other gains (Phipps, 2009).
Phipps, A. (2009). Rape and respectability: Ideas about sexual violence and social class. Sociology, 43(4), 667–683.
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