A campaigner against sexual violence is calling for a senior police officer to step down following his description of a 10-year-old rape victim as a willing participant.
Police have launched an employment investigation after Central District police commander Superindendent Russell Gibson's comment in a letter to the rapist's wife.
Louise Nicholas, whose rape allegations against some police officers led to a commission of inquiry in 2007, says Mr Gibson's comments are horrifying and he should step down.
Ms Nicholas says the police have made significant improvements in how they deal with sexual assault complaints and she is shocked by the comments.
National Collective of Rape Crisis spokesperson Georgia Knowles says the comment shows an absolute lack of understanding by the officer.
Police Minister Anne Tolley says she cannot discuss an employment investigation, but the comment is appalling.
Police say Mr Gibson's comment is in no way reflective of police views and they are committed to supporting the victims of sexual offending and holding those responsible for such crimes to account.