Durham University student Alistair Cooke, 22, has been accused of the Rape of a drunken undergraduate student. Cooke, who is in his third year, is said to have followed the girl home from a party and Durham Crown Court was told that he laughed as he sadistically attacked her and held her down “like a rag doll.” He has been accused of three counts of rape on the same victim, which he denies. This perpetuates the longstanding problem of university Students falling prey to rapes.

‘The only times I was conscious was when he was moving and hurting me’

The victim accuses Cooke of following her home after a house party and discovering her lying on the couch asleep. He then took her to bed and asked if she knew his name (in the hopes that if she didn’t know his name, she wouldn’t be able to testify against him, but look how that turned out, Alistair) before he raped her.

As the victim recounted the story to a court, she said that Cooke “was laughing at me, his genitalia was inside of me, he was hurting me, he was raping me,” and added that she remembered feeling his hands all over her chest. She also recalled “waking up” to find him “opening up a condom packet,” but as she “tried to sit up,” probably to resist his aggressive advances, “he pushed me down like a rag doll.” She concluded, “The only times I was conscious was when he was moving and hurting me.

I was more drunk than I had ever been in my life.” A traumatic story that hopefully will end with justice being done (as it very rarely is with rape cases).

This case just adds to alarming rape statistics

The Cooke case is just the latest in the all-too-often student rapes that happen on university campuses, and these are just the ones we know about.

Only 35% of all rapes get reported. That’s almost two thirds of all rape incidents that no one ever hears about. According to the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN), 23.1% of female undergraduate students experience rape or sexual assault through physical force, violence, or incapacitation. That’s pretty much a quarter of all undergraduate girls being raped.

Cooke’s victim told the court, “I blamed myself so much. Maybe if I had not drunk so much, I could have stopped it.” This is the biggest problem: girls blaming themselves for their attacks, believing it is their own fault for dressing a certain way or drinking too much, and it’s ludicrous. The rapist knows what they’re doing, so it all hinges on them being decent human beings. All anti-sexual assault groups like RAINN agree that if somebody is raped, it is nobody’s fault but the rapist, and they must be brought to justice, and they fight to get this message across to young women every single day.