Friday, May 7, 2010

Men sometimes tell rape lies, too

Women have a near-monopoly on crying rape falsely, and that's likely because women generally know they can tell plausible rape lies while men generally know they can't.  But sometimes men tell rape lies, too. Here are three such stories.  The first is a troubling tale of a military interrogator telling a detainee a false tale that another detainee (who was, in fact, imaginary) had been brutally raped in order to get the (real) detainee to talk. If an interrogator similarly threatened a woman with a made-up tale of rape, it likely would be a national news story.  The second story is a strange tale about a man who claimed he was raping a boy when he wasn't, just for attention. The third is a tale of a jailhouse false rape claim.

Interrogator: I used false rape claim on Khadr

An interrogator at the Guantánamo Bay hearing for detainee Omar Khadr said he told Khadr about a false rape scenario.


GUANTANAMO BAY NAVY BASE, Cuba -- To get teen terror suspect Omar Khadr to cooperate, a former U.S. Army interrogator testified Thursday, he told the wounded Canadian a ``fictitious'' tale of an Afghan youth who was gang-raped in an American prison and died.

``We'd tell him about this Afghan who gets sent to an American prison and there's a bunch of big black guys and big Nazis,'' said the former interrogator, who was since convicted of detainee abuse and was identified in court only as Interrogator No. 1.

Interrogator No. 1 gave an on-the-record interview with The Toronto Star in 2008 and his name was widely published in accounts of his court-martial in September 2005.

The interrogators told Khadr that the Afghan -- ``a poor little kid . . . away from home, kind of isolated'' -- had been sent to the U.S. prison because the interrogators were disappointed with his truthfulness, Interrogator No. 1 said. When patriotic American prisoners discovered the Afghan was a Muslim, praying five times a day, they raped him in their rage over the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, Interrogator No. 1 said Khadr, who was 15 and badly wounded at the time, was told.

Khadr's attorneys called Interrogator No. 1 to bolster Khadr's claim that he was abused while in U.S. custody and their motion before a military judge that any confessions he made during his captivity should be considered coerced and not admissible.

His testimony capped an eight-day hearing that called 16 witnesses -- anonymous military interrogators, FBI agents and military medical staff -- and then went into recess for at least a month because the judge, Col. Patrick Parrish, agreed to a prosecution request that Khadr undergo a mental health exam. Parrish gave defense attorneys until Friday night to decide whether Canadian who has grown into manhood behind the razor wire at Camp Delta here would cooperate.

Khadr, now 23, had specifically claimed in an affidavit outlining abuse that he was threatened with rape. On Tuesday, a medic identified as Mr. M testified that he once found Khadr chained by his arms to the door of his cage-like cell, hooded and in tears. That, too, tracked allegations included in Khadr's affidavit.

According to court testimony, Interrogator No. 1 was attached to the 519 MP Battalion, which guarded prisoners at Bagram air base in Afghanistan in 2002. Three years later, Interrogator No. 1 pleaded guilty to three acts of detainee abuse on another captive at Bagram in December 2002.

Interrogator No. 1 said he questioned Khadr as many as 25 times over 100 hours before the teen was sent to Guantánamo for more interrogations.

According to earlier testimony, Interrogator No. 1 questioned Khadr the first time on a stretcher while he was still under sedation on Aug. 12, 2002, hours after the 15-year-old was released from an U.S. Army combat hospital and life-saving surgery. The interrogator denied under questioning from defense counsel Barry Coburn that he ever threatened Khadr directly with rape.

Instead, he said, a group of U.S. interrogators dreamed up the ``fictitious'' Afghan rape story to utilize authorized ``Love of Freedom'' and ``Fear Up'' techniques designed to break particularly uncooperative prisoners.

U.S. troops captured Khadr two weeks before his first formal interrogation, near dead and shot twice through the back during a Special Forces raid on a suspected al Qaeda stronghold near Khost, Afghanistan.

Defense attorneys argue that the military mistreated Khadr and created a coercive environment that should disqualify the truthfulness and reliability of his later confessions that he threw a hand grenade that killed U.S. Army Sgt. 1st Class Christopher Speer, 28.

Prosecutors defend the youth's treatment and say he subsequently boasted voluntarily, and truthfully, to FBI agents conducting a criminal terror trial investigation that he threw the grenade and planted land mines in Afghanistan meant to kill U.S. soldiers and earn him $1,500 a head.


Police: Bored Boynton man tells California cops he's raping a teenage boy

A 42-year-old man was arrested for filing a false police report after calling authorities in California claiming he was sexually assaulting a 15-year-old boy, according to police.

Boynton Beach police arrested Paul Hartness just after 10 p.m. Thursday.

According to information provided by police, Boynton Beach police were contacted by police in Redding, California who said they received a call from a man who said he was raping a teenage boy. Authorities say they were able to trace the call to Hartness' address on Farnworth Dr. in Boynton Beach.

Police say following his arrest Hartness admitted making up the entire episode because he was lonely, bored and looking for attention.


Northampton County prisoner levels false rape charge against cellmate, police say

A 20-year-old Wilson Borough man jailed under charges he took a swing at a cop has since made a false accusation that his cellmate raped him, according to police.

Charles Christopher Howells, formerly of the 400 block of South 21st Street, told Northampton County Prison guards he was raped April 2 by cellmate Steven Halada, according to court records.

Halada denied any physical contact with Howells, who recanted the claim on April 29. Howells allegedly told police he wanted to get Halada punished because he "heard (Halada) likes little boys."

Halada, formerly of Slatington, was previously convicted of trying on Aug. 5, 2006, to lure a 13-year-old boy into his car with offers of food, cash and a pill. Halada was released Oct. 8, 2009, but re-jailed under accusations he didn't undergo court-ordered therapy.

Howells is awaiting trial on an accusation he swung at Wilson Borough officer Michael Potope "to see what if felt like to hit a cop." Court records say Howells waited at police headquarters and missed with a punch when Potope came to help him.

Howells at that time was on probation for allegedly punching a Pennsylvania State Police trooper in Bucks County.

According to the latest accusation, Howells told police in a written statement that he was raped while he was sleeping. He's charged with false swearing, unsworn falsification to authorities and false reports to law enforcement.

Howells told District Judge Gay Elwell at a video arraignment today that he takes medications but ran out two weeks ago. Court records did not disclose his medical condition.

He was re-committed to Northampton County Prison in lieu of $10,000 bail. Elwell ordered Howells to keep up with his medicine. She also said he may be moved to a mental health facility or group home.