Forcing or coercing someone to have sexual contact is against the law. In New York State, if a person is forced to have sexual intercourse or if the person is unable to consent, the behavior of the perpetrator is considered rape. This includes any amount of force or threat of physical injury that places the person in fear of their safety. Perpetrators do not need to use a weapon or physically harm people to make them fearful of injury or in fear for their life.

The courts have ruled that a person is unable to consent if he or she is mentally incapacitated or is physically helpless due to drug or alcohol consumption, is asleep, or is less than seventeen years of age. If a person has intercourse with someone without their consent, it is rape. Forcing or coercing someone to engage in any sexual act under the circumstances above is considered against the law.

For Pratt’s policies on sexual assault, visit the following link: Student Sexual Misconduct Policy.