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EAST SIDE, Manhattan – There’s strength in numbers, especially when it comes to sexual assault victims.

Sexual attack, sexual assault or rape, whether it’s a stranger or someone you recognize, for victims, talking about such a traumatic experience doesn’t come easy with time.

New York City is defying that trend and NYPD Commissioner Bill Bratton credited the most unlikely source during a radio interview Tuesday.

“We had a significant increase in 2015 of rapes that were reported from previous years and some instances going back many more years,” Bratton said. “I use the ‘Cosby Effect’ term because some of the rapes he was accused of go back 30 or 40 years.”

Whether the “Cosby Effect” can be attributed for the six percent increase in reported rapes in New York City last year, Bratton also said the NYPD has stepped up efforts to reach out to victims.

However, hearing details from other victims, as in the case of the several Cosby accusers, could help those who have been attacked to come forward.

“There’s the fear, there’s the shame, there’s the stigmatism,” psychologist Dr. Jay ‘Buzz’ Von Ornsteiner said. “They see that by stepping forward, they may stop this individual from victimizing others.”

Deputy Director of women’s advocacy group, Hollaback, Debjani Roy agrees.

“People who have experienced sexual assault historically have not been believed,” Roy said. “People who have been harassed on the street have not been validated in their experience. So it really helps when people come forward with their stories and publicize them for a large group of people to read them and see their own experience in that story.”