Friday, May 22, 2009

Earlene Rogers' rape lie caused two men to spend eight months in jail

Eight months! Two adult men in their 30s spent eight months -- that's equivalent to a date from last September to now -- behind bars for a crime they did not commit. And every day they faced the prospect of being locked up for much, much longer.

All because an 18-year-old woman decided she would lie to grand jury about them -- and she did it not once but four times.

If convicted, she could serve up to 56 years for her lies.

The two innocent men missed time from their families that can never be made up. They suffered incalculable stress for which no compensation can make them whole. Their harm can never, ever be undone.

The fact that two adult males could be jailed with bond set at $150,000 on the say-so of a teenager is our judicial system's great shame.

Prosecutor Mark Williams is correct when he says "no one should have to spend any time in jail if they are innocent." That is a truth beyond dispute. Yet false rape case after false rape case after false rape case show that prosecutors really don't practice that.

Mr. Williams also said "we don't take these things lightly." Again, many, many prosecutors do take them lightly. They are rarely prosecuted.

Many false rape cases end with the liar serving less jail time than her victims -- is there any other crime where that can be said? I can't think of any. And that, ladies and gentlemen, tells us everything we need to know about our false rape culture, where falsely accused men are treated as flotsam, unfortunate but necessary collateral damage in the "more important" war on rape.

Let's follow this one closely -- this could be a poster child case for our cause if this young woman is convicted and doesn't receive substantial jail time -- far more than these men served.

This case, and others like it, is the reason we have this Web site.


Kirksville woman indicted for making false rape claims

KIRKSVILLE — A Kirksville woman is facing eight counts of perjury stemming from rape allegations that resulted in two innocent men spending eight months in jail.

According to Adair County Prosecuting Attorney Mark Williams, Earlene Rogers, 18, was charged with lying to a grand jury four times over two separate depositions.

Last year, Rogers allegedly accused Glen Johnson, 35, and Timothy Rogers, 30, of rape and forcible sodomy.

The men, with bonds of $150,000, spent eight months in jail before they were released in February of this year.

Earlene Rogers is currently being held at the Adair County Jail on a $25,000 cash-only bond.

Johnson, a father of two, said he feels cheated by the time he lost with his children.

“I lost eight months of my life,” he said. “That’s eight months away from my kids. We missed a lot of holidays and functions we will never get back.”

Rogers was expected to be arraigned this week, but no attorney had been named to represent her.

If she chooses a private attorney to represent her, the arraignment date will be June 1. If one is appointed by the state, the date will be postponed until June 2.

Johnson is just hoping justice will be served.

“I just want to let the court system do its thing,” he said. “A person shouldn’t technically be able to lie and get away with it.”


Local woman charged with perjury

KIRKSVILLE, MO. -- A Kirksville woman is behind bars accused of lying under oath.

Earlene Rogers, 18, was indicted by a grand jury on eight counts of perjury. She's currently being held in the Adair County Jail on $25,000 cash only bond.

The charges are in connection with an incident in which she accused Kirksville residents Glen Johnson and Timothy Rogers of raping and sodomizing her last year. Earlene Rogers withdrew the allegations against the men this February after they had spent eight months in jail awaiting trial.

“The state can prove a sex crime merely by the allegation of the victim. You don't really need any evidence, you don't need any eyewitnesses. It's just whether or not a judge or jury would believe that witness. And so if the victim then under what we believe falsely accuses somebody there has to be accountability towards that person,” said Adair County Prosecutor Mark Williams.

Williams tells KTVO the indictment alleges that Earlene Rogers lied about what happened in that incident.

“We don't take these things lightly. Even though we didn't handle the underlying case because of a conflict once we found out what we believed happened we got the files, reviewed them and presented it to the grand jury. We pay attention to everything that happens, and we certainly don't want people falsely accusing anybody. Nobody should have to spend any time in jail if they are innocent,” Williams said.

Williams says Earlene Rogers could be arraigned as early as Tuesday. If convicted of all eight charges, she could spend up to 56 years in prison.