Monday, April 11, 2011

Woman sends lover to jail for months with rape lie -- because she was mad that he took her cell phone

Melinda Denham, 25, told police, and then a grand jury, that her ex-boyfriend, Shannon Hudson, raped her twice in the bedroom of her father's home.  That's all authorities needed to jail Mr. Hudson for months. He was charged with burglary and two counts of rape, crimes that could have sent him to prison for 30 years.  Finally, Denham wrote a letter to a judge and admitted she lied. 

"The truth is he never raped me," she wrote. "It was mutual between both of us. I got mad over him taking my cell phone and not giving it back," she wrote. Denham later said she recanted because she loved Hudson but also admitted she was pregnant by one of two men, neither of them Hudson.

After reading Denham's letter, prosecutors dismissed the charges against Hudson and charged his accuser with perjury and making false alarms.

If this had been an actual rape, there would be countless news stories written about it. Since it was a false rape claim, we are lucky it was covered at all, and from what we can see, only one mainstream publication reported on it. And, of course, the focus in the story is more on hypothetical, possible rape victims who might be discouraged from reporting than on the men who are actually victimized by false rape claims.

The story states the following: "False charges are a nightmare for the men who are targeted, but are also a concern for people advocating for real victims, such as Kendall Fisher, executive director of the advocacy group Women Helping Women. More than 1,300 women were victims of rapes, sexual assaults or other sex crimes last year in Hamilton County, Fisher said.  She's afraid false rape allegations could result in a negative backlash for true victims.  'What it may do is impact somebody else's decision to report or not to report,' Fisher said."

I am not certain what Ms. Fisher would recommend be done about this, because the article doesn't tell us.  Unfortunately, members of what can aptly be called the sexual grievance industry seem to never offer solutions for false rape claims, aside from insisting they not be charged at all and that they not be reported.  The idea is that we can fight one form of criminality (rape) by pretending that another (false rape claims) does not exist. This thinking elevates the victimization of our daughters above that of our sons.

Ms. Fisher also said this: "It's always one of the things people are afraid of: 'I'm not going to be believed.'"  Funny, I never hear a sexual assault counselor bemoan the fact that men and boys like Shannon Hudson aren't believed when they deny they were raped.  They are jailed solely on the basis of a woman's rape lie. For what other alleged crime do we hand one class of citizens the power to deprive another class of citizens of their liberty based solely on their word?

Charlie Rubenstein, chief criminal Cincinnati prosecutor said that woman making false rape allegations do it to cover for being out late or getting pregnant.

The article notes the following about the prevalence of false rape claims: "Despite the high profile cases, there are few well-documented statistics about false rape claims.  The number of false rape cases ranges in studies from 2 percent to 90 percent of reported rapes. That's because the studies don't agree on how to measure false rape allegations or who decides the allegations are false.  For example, one study cites a case where police didn't believe a rape allegation because it was made by a heavy woman who police determined likely couldn't have been raped because she wore her underpants too tight."

According to the story: "Denham's case drew particularly heated words from Assistant Prosecutor David Wood in a March 17 hearing before Common Pleas Court Steve Martin. 'One of the things that offended me ... is the defendant's cavalier attitude toward all of this,' Wood told the judge.  'I don't think she's ever put two and two together and realized if no woman ever lied about being raped then the only thing we'd need to convict rapists ... is for her to take the stand and say it. But because of people like her who lie about being raped, every single woman who ever really is raped is raked over the coals.' Many rape cases aren't reported, Wood told Denham, 'because (victims) know the process is so horrible and the reason why is people like you ...'"