Friday, December 30, 2011

Man jailed after falsely reporting sexual assault

A town man was sent back to Orleans County Jail on Thursday after falsely reporting a sexual assault at the facility, deputies said.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Navy issues guidelines on sexual assault, warns about making false claims

The Naval Criminal Investigative Service (NCIS) issued guidelines and tips on how individuals can report and prevent sexual assault crimes through NCIS' Crime Reduction Program. Among other things, it states:

"Sexual assaults are serious crimes, therefore, victims should not report false sexual assault claims.

"Regrettable sex, absent or late for muster with a rape excuse, caught cheating on your spouse or significant other, or becoming pregnant by someone you do not want to be the father of your child are not excuses to report rape and are unacceptable."


In cases where DNA evidence doesn't resolve questions of guilt or innocence, the innocent have a much tougher time being exonerated

All those DNA exonerations proved that our justice system is terribly flawed. As the DNA cases thin out, there are still likely innumerable cases where the innocent were convicted due to the same kinds of problems that plagued the DNA cases -- except that DNA evidence won't help resolve them.  In cases where DNA evidence doesn't matter, the innocent have a much more difficult time being exonerated.

Christina Almanza, 17, 'pretended she was kidnapped by sex traffickers to hide her pregnancy from her parents'

While not a false rape/sexual assault case, the use of lying about being kidnapped by sex traffickers, to avoid the uncomfortable position of telling your parents you're pregnant, is abominable.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Time to elevate the public discourse about sexual assault

The public discourse about sexual assault in the blogosphere rarely rises above puerility.  Gender-related blogs typically are little more than places to rant and to ridicule those who don't share the ranter's views. Missing from almost all of them is the critical balance that is at the heart of every serious jurisprudential effort to deal with this thorny crime that is rarely committed in public: the need to punish offenders while insuring that the innocent are not punished with them. Every serious voice on these issues recognizes that achieving this balance is critical.

While it is simply not worth anyone's time to read, much less respect, smug, extremist bloggers who have no regard for this balance, we should gladly engage in public discourse persons who recognize both sides of the balance even when we largely disagree with them. Respect for this balance needs to be the litmus test for whether to take someone seriously on these issues.  Some examples:

Woman, 21, made false rape claims, court told

A WOMAN falsely claimed she was raped outside a Bury nightclub when out celebrating graduating from a beauty course, a court heard.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Atrocity: Young Man's Life Destroyed By Unreliable Rape Claim

The Duluth News Tribune has a  follow-up to a very disturbing three part story it reported last March. It was a story that furnished a rare, microscopic look at the unfathomable power women have to cause men and boys to be arrested just on their say so whenever they cry "rape." It was a frightening tale about what a 34-year-old woman did to a 17-year-old boy, and one that is sure to get your blood boiling if you care a whit about justice.

The latest follow-up news report tells us that the uncertainty still hangs over the young man's life. The latest story doesn't do an adequate job describing what really happened. It makes it look as if there really may be two sides to the story. There aren't. There is an unsubstantiated and unreliable claim that has destroyed a boy's life on the one side, and a boy's denials on the other.  The evidence supporting the accuser's claim makes gossamer look like armor plate.  The unreliable accuser is still cloaked in anonymity while the boy's good name has been destroyed. Neither the police nor the Duluth Tribune News should be treating this as a legitimate claim at this stage, and the police ought to come out and say that there is no reliable evidence that young Andrew Lawrence committed a crime, because there isn't. If that sounds too harsh, too anti-"victim," too un-PC, read the latest story and the earlier three-part report yourself, and you decide. Don't trust me. All of the stories are linked below. Based on the information contained in the news reports linked below, the boy is the likely victim here.

How law enforcement forces confessions to alleged crimes the confessors didn't commit

Stigler woman accused of falsifying a rape report

A Stigler woman has been charged in Pittsburg County District Court with false reporting of a crime.

Katheryn Marie Louise Clark, 21, is accused of falsely reporting “that she had been raped by her soon to be brother-in-law,” court documents indicate.

On Dec. 16, Pittsburg County Deputy Jack Suter was dispatched to Longtown and took a report from Clark that she had been raped, according to a police affidavit. Clark accused the man of dragging her by the hair and forcibly having sex with her while she was screaming and biting him, according to the affidavit.

A medical rape kit was performed on Clark, according to the affidavit, and the nurse performing the rape kit told authorities that “there was not any evidence of sexual assault.”

Clark was arrested Dec. 17 and on Dec. 19, she was charged with false reporting of a crime. If convicted, Clark faces up to 90 days in jail. She is due back in court Feb. 7 at 9 a.m. to face this charge.


Monday, December 26, 2011

Oakham woman to serve probation after false rape claim

A 44-year-old Sunday school teacher from Oakham pleaded guilty yesterday to lying to police, telling them she’d been raped, and she was sentenced to 2 years’ probation.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Merry Christmas, you've been falsely accused

Despite our fondest aspirations, Christmas is marked less by peace on earth and goodwill toward men than by bruised feelings, horn honking, and at least a vague feeling of dread. Both emotions and alcohol tend to flow a little too freely on the run up to the big day, and all our modern day angst is magnified under the Christmas snow globe. In short, it is the perfect season for the nastiest of human dramas, like suicide, assault, and false rape claims.  This blog, of course, is dedicated to giving voice to victims of false heinous sex allegations, and we call our holiday offering, "Merry Christmas, you've been falsely accused," only because we couldn't come up with anything better.

Regardless of your troubles this holiday season, they probably can't compare to those of some of the men featured here:

Friday, December 23, 2011

Man pleads guilty to two charges in bizarre story

Judge White decided to order a pre-sentence report for an accused after hearing a story involving a false sexual assault and an alcohol filled night that ended in parties engaging in a threesome while being filmed. Timothy D. Bergstrom, 30, pleaded guilty to a charge of public mischief and failing to comply with undertaking conditions in Leduc Provincial Court.

Statutes of limitations: Vital to the integrity of our legal system

"Imagine what would happen if a person decided, decades after the fact, to accuse a person of heinous crimes that never actually occurred. The motive could be money, it could be revenge, it could simply be the result of a misguided trip to the therapist who coaxes false memories out of a troubled mind. If our legal system allowed that person to file a lawsuit long after witnesses had died and evidence disappeared, we would be making a mockery of the phrase 'due process.'"

Read it here: Christine M. Flowers: Let's honor statute's limitations (Phila. Daily News)

'The law's willingness to expose kids to adult criminal penalties is downright disturbing, considering how likely kids are to be wrongfully convicted'

From the Chicago Tribune:

Keep teens out of adult criminal court

Still work to be done to protect children from hazards of adult criminal penalties

Any parent knows that teenagers want to be older than they are. They want to stay out as late as possible, they want to hang out with whomever they choose — and they don't want anyone to tell them what to do.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Christine Flowers has no use for false accusers

Must reading:

When victims lie

As I was saying . . .

Raping the benefit of the doubt

Feminist legal scholar explains need for statutes of limitations in sex cases

Statutes of limitations in criminal cases are designed to protect the innocent. The longer an accuser waits to bring a charge from the date it allegedly occurred, the more difficult it is to fairly defend against it.  The horror stories of the repressed memories witch hunts are examples of what can occur. In rape cases, there is a national trend to lengthen or eliminate statutes of limitations entirely. This is a concern to the criminal defense bar, the ACLU, and many others. We write about it from time to time -- see e.g.:; and

Aya Gruber is a legal scholar whose feminist credentials can't be questioned. See here. Her views on these issues are complex and surprisingly nuanced. She is someone to be taken seriously even when you disagree with her. Read what she says about the reasons for statutes of limitations in sex cases.

Why Are There Statutes of Limitations in Child Rape Cases?
by Jessica Grose/Slate

On Tuesday, the Philadelphia Inquirer reported that former Philadelphia Daily News sports columnist Bill Conlin had been accused of molesting four children in the 1970s. Because of the statute of limitations on sexual assault prosecutions in Pennsylvania, Conlin’s alleged victims cannot bring him to court. Kelley Blanchet, who is Conlin’s niece and one of his alleged victims, told the Inquirer that she went public with the accusations in part to draw attention to the inadequacies of these statute of limitations laws (she was also inspired to come forward by the Jerry Sandusky revelations at Penn State). Former Slate-ster Chad Matlin asked, “Is there a rationale for statue of limitations in sexual assault cases?”

Though child molestation is a monstrous crime, there are good reasons for a statute of limitations in sexual assault cases—mainly that the longer you take to prosecute any crime, the more stale the evidence gets and the less reliable it is. Aya Gruber, a professor at the University of Colorado Law School, says that when the charge is based on the word of the victim, timing can be especially important. “For example, if a person comes forward with a claim of sexual assault when he was a 7-year-old, 20 years after the fact, arguably the charge is suspect from the beginning,” Gruber points out. “The person’s memory has been subject to change and influence, essential witnesses might have forgotten the events or even be dead, it may be impossible to get physical evidence in the case, and the like.” Furthermore, Gruber says, a long-delayed charge lessens the retributive and deterrent value of a conviction.

Historically, only murders were exempt from statute of limitations laws, but there’s been a general trend in the U.S. toward increasing the statute of limitations on sexual assaults in almost every jurisdiction. Pennsylvania is a good example of the wider trend: Before 1991, child sexual assault victims had two years to report inappropriate touching and five years to report a greater abuse, like sodomy or rape. As the Inquirer explains, the statute of limitations law in child sexual assault cases has been extended three times since then. Now, child victims have until they turn 50 to report sexual assaults—but that’s only for victims who turned 18 after the law went into effect, in 2002, so that still leaves Conlin’s alleged victims without legal recourse.


Brown University suit settled

The lawsuit filed by William McCormick III and his parents against Brown University, Marcella Dresdale (the student who accused McCormick of raping her), and Richard Dresdale (the accuser's father), has been settled on undisclosed terms.

Officers: Woman filed false rape report against husband’s friend

A Fort Myers woman is accused of filing a false rape report against her lover at the request of her husband.

Jody Mary Ryan, 18, was arrested by Fort Myers police Saturday at her home. She is facing charges of making a false report.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Another high profile sex crime that didn't happen

Another high profile sex case was dropped, and this one affirms, yet again, that when it comes to supposed sex offenses, it's all too easy to arrest and to charge men for criminality in-the-air; in this case, a high profile "grope" that never was. Still, for the better part of two months, an American football player was put through hell for doing nothing more than making fleeting contact with a woman's hand in a nightclub. This story is a wake-up call to all young men in the bar and nightclub scene.

Last Halloween, Julian Edelman of the New England Patriots was arrested for groping at night club. In a police report, his still unnamed accuser stated that "she felt the suspects (sic) hand come in contact with her vagina in what she described as 'a purposeful squeeze or swipe.'" She said he groped for two seconds. The woman informed nightclub staff about the incident and requested that Edelman be removed from the club.

According to Prof. KC Johnson, whose chronicling of the Duke lacrosse case helped expose the accused players' innocence: "Early press coverage, especially from the tabloid-ish Boston Herald, presumed if not guilt at the least a demonstration of extremely poor character."

You can watch an actual video of the incident here. You will need to avoid blinking when the alleged "grope" occurs. Edelman, wearing shorts as part of a Reno 911 costume, does not appear to make contact with the woman for the two seconds she alleges. Although the video is difficult to see, you can see Edelman reach out his hand, then look back.  Prosecutors say that Mr. Edelman took her hand briefly, that the physical contact between the two was fleeting and did not meet the elements of any crime.

In the video, the woman's face was blurred by the Suffolk County District Attorney's office to protect her identity.  The DA issued a statement: "[A] review of both witness statements and video surveillance has revealed that the Commonwealth would be unable to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant intentionally engaged in a harmful or offensive touching of the complainant that would be regarded by society as immodest, immoral, and improper."

According to David E. Frank, writing for the news blog of Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly: "Edelman’s lawyer, Amy McNamee, said that his client has maintained from the beginning that he is innocent. Today’s court action, she added, confirms that he was telling the truth. 'Everyone was very quick to immediately accuse him of being some kind of pervert,' McNamee said. 'It’s not easy to have to walk around holding your head up when you know you didn’t do it.'” The video, according to Mr. Frank, "seriously called into question the alleged victim’s account of the incident."

Prof. Johnson noted that the newspapers covering the story have declined to reveal the woman's identity:  "Perhaps, as occurred initially when the New York Times refused to identify [Duke lacrosse false accuser] Mangum after the exoneration, the papers didn’t want to do anything that might deter false-grope accusers from coming forward in the future."

'Victims' urged to consider consequences of false rape claims

The thing that pisses me off the most about the following, is that there is not a shred of concern shown over the falsely accused. And that is just despicable.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Shutting down the fraternity at the University of Vermont is a 'social injustice'

Former president of UVM's Sigma Phi Epsilon chapter Alexander Haller calls it "a social injustice," because it is.

Mr. Haller was referring to the fact that his fraternity was shuttered indefinitely by the national fraternity, with the university's blessing, in the wake of the infamous rape survey.

We've previously reported that the fraternity neither sent out nor sanctioned the infamous question asking "who" the recipient(s) would like to rape. One new frat brother posed the query at issue to a limited fraternity audience. The person or persons to whom the survey was sent refused to answer the question and told the new member who sent it to change it immediately.

According to Vermont Public Radio, Haller says his home away from home, his former fraternity house, was besieged -- by the media, by women's rights groups, and by administrators.

Mr. Haller explained: "I don't know what's going on behind closed doors at UVM, but I feel like they're just looking for any reason to continue to make us look like monsters."

Haller has a good suggestion. Instead of "the whole world" telling the frat brother who wrote the query "in bad taste" that "they hate him because he doesn't get it," the guy could us "some sensitivity training."

Ah, but that's not good enough for the national fraternity, or the University of Vermont. Annie Stevens, director of student and campus life at the university, said she supports Sigma Phi's decision to close down its UVM chapter because of the survey.

If a rogue professor in a department at the university did something similar, no one would suggest shutting down the entire department or cleaning house and bringing in all new professors.  The same with a business in the private sector; a symphony orchestra; or an office of the federal government.

But fraternities are different. Why?  Dr. Warren Farrell explains why -- and he doesn't pull any punches. Mr. Haller is strongly urged to pay close attention to what Dr. Farrell wrote. And after he reads that, he's strongly urged to contact FIRE, because the university's possible role in shutting down the fraternity raises serious First Amendment questions that ought to be addressed.  Here's what Farrell said:

"The freshman male is likely to acquire a new feeling about himself: he is the designated potential perpetrator until proven innocent.

"This message will be reinforced by a barrage of gender courses, the attitudes of a good many faculty, and on many campuses, what Charlotte Allen calls 'the scorched-earth war against fraternities.' The anti-fraternity movement is ostensibly about wantonness and excess (binge-drinking, hazing, date rape), but in reality it’s about erasing the best-known male refuge from the suffocating political correctness on campus and its theory of the evil male.

"The only males likely to escape this pressure are gays, African-Americans, the transgendered, or the harmlessly hetero—docile guys who agree with the standard campus view that males are dangerous. The campus environment is so hostile toward men that it doesn’t allow hostility toward men to be considered a 'hostile environment.' Only established grievance groups get to detect hostile environments."


Girl jailed over rape claims

A 20-year-old girl has been jailed for two years... after falsely accusing two men of raping her.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Women's activists pat each other on the back for closing a fraternity -- over misconduct apparently limited to one frat brother

Yet another ritualistic gender passion play was staged last week, this time at the University of Vermont, where a chapter of a fraternity was shut down indefinitely because of purportedly misogynistic conduct.  A headline on a woman's rights site blared: Success! Frat That Joked About Raping Women Closed. 

By now the story is well known: the fraternity circulated a survey among its members asking who they would like to rape. This crude and childish query was presented as yet another instance of misogynistic conduct in the hyper-masculine culture of fraternities, where such conduct not only is common but flourishes.

Except, apparently, that's not what happened. The fraternity didn't send out a survey; apparently, one new frat brother posed the offensive question to a limited fraternity audience. Not only was his action not sanctioned by the fraternity, but the person or persons to whom the survey was sent refused to answer the question and told the new member who sent it to change it immediately.

Easton police say woman lied about rape incident

A 30-year-old woman who claimed she was dragged into an abandoned building in Easton and sexually assaulted fabricated the story, city police said today.

"Does Oregon's Government Simply Hate Black People?" The apparently false rape conviction of Terrence Kimble

Policeman struck after man drank eight pints

A MAN who got drunk to celebrate the dismissal of a false rape allegation ended up assaulting a police officer called out to a domestic dispute.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

National fraternity is willing to throw innocent frat brothers under the bus to make a statement about conduct demeaning to women

The national Sigma Phi Epsilon organization has said there is no indication that a University of Vermont chapter of its fraternity sanctioned the online survey asking fraternity brothers whom they would rape, see here, and UVM officials have said it was unclear who wrote the survey, whether the survey was sent out, or whether anybody responded. 

Yet, prior to the conclusion of an ongoing investigation, the national fraternity said it is "indefinitely closing” the chapter, noting that "any behavior that demeans women is not tolerated by the fraternity."

Refusing to condone bad taste behavior that is in demeaning to anyone is, of course, an appropriate impulse. The national fraternity has every right to police its image and to insist that a certain level of civility is maintained. What is not an appropriate impulse is caving in to PC bloodlust and to punish all the members of a local fraternity for misconduct that might have been caused by just one or two frat brothers.  Sigma Phi Epsilon's rush to judgment smacks of politicized pandering, and that is never done for a proper purpose.

A number of questions present themselves. Two of the more interesting are as follows: first, if the survey had originated in an organization other than a fraternity, would there have been such an overwhelming outcry to punish the entire organization before it was determined whether the organization, or a rogue member, was responsible for it?  If the answer is "no," what does that say about how fraternities are perceived to the outside world, and is that perception justified?

Second, as Abby W. Schachter, writing in the New York Post, put it: "Would the . . . national fraternal organization have reacted any differently if the survey had been about potential male rape victims instead of female rape victims?"  See here.  

Friday, December 16, 2011

Alleged sexual assault case at SAU proven false

Since the alleged sexual assault charge on Oct. 23 on the campus of Spring Arbor University (SAU), the charges have been dropped. An SAU student, 22, made the claim, which was then investigated by Thomas Fiero and the Jackson County police.

'Any rape is too much,' but because of the 'history of twisting rape statistics to promote [the] fantasy of a modern America dominated by violent men . . . virtually any assertion about the topic demands careful scrutiny'


Woman sentenced for false Gresham rape claim

Another follow up. This time, to our story HERE

A woman who lied this summer about being raped by two men behind a bookstore at a busy shopping center pleaded no contest on Monday, Dec. 5, to a charge of initiating a false police report.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Assholez who despise the falsely accused

A zany, twisted, smug, extremist feminist blogger, who hates and despises with every fiber of his being anyone who doesn't share his zany, twisted, extremist view of the world, is at it again:

I have no idea what is the point of David Futrelle's mish-mash of a post, except to mock the wrongly accused, of course, but I thought our readers should know about it.

Futrelle attacks a post we wrote about the "rape survey." We said we think that survey is indefensible. Ah, but that wasn't good enough for good old Dave. You see, good old Dave had a conniption, a bona fide feminist hissy fit, because we dared to suggest that it is not fair to consider this lone piece of evidence--this "rape survey"--which, apparently, was the work not of a dreaded, misogynistic fraternity, but rather of a lone, unidentified frat brother--as some sort of "evidence" that we live in a "rape culture."

Here's Davey's riposte -- you may need to read it several times to capture the full flavor of his brilliance: "Yeah, I wonder why casual jokes about rape would possibly be considered as part of 'rape culture.'”

And when Moe konks Curly on the head with an over-sized mallet, it's evidence that we live in a "murder culture."

To chronically offended extremists who insist ours is a "rape culture," rape is "in the air"--it's like "The Force" in Star Wars, "it surrounds us and penetrates us, it binds the galaxy together." Has any other imaginary concept ever been invoked as often to mean so much and, really, nothing at all?

You see, Mr. Futrelle, casual jokes about rape are not at issue.  One stupid "survey" by, apparently, one unidentified frat brother, is. And allow me to connect the dots since you seem incapable of doing so: no sane and rational person would consider this isolated instance of bad taste indicative of anything, much less that ours is a "rape culture," despite all your twisting and pounding. You hurt your cause when you overplay it.

In fact, the almost universal reaction condemning this "survey"--including the comments of this blog (which, by the way, is dedicated to giving voice to the wrongly accused, not feminist causes)--is overwhelming evidence that ours is far less a "rape culture" than a culture that has no tolerance for rape. Yes, there are too many rapists--one rape is too many--and yes, once in while, some idiot thinks something like this is funny when it isn't, the way some idiots think all manner of things in bad taste are funny. That scarcely is indicative of a "culture," and this "survey" won't incite a single young man to rape.

So why on earth does this David Futrelle think he needs to pick a fight with this blog? Next thing you know, he'll be conspiring to put us on a hate list or something!

But, wait, folks, David Futrelle isn't finished yet--make sure you are sitting down for this one: David Futrelle proceeds to criticize me for not advocating against--wait for it: prison rape. Yes, dear readers, he does. Prison rape.

Because, as everyone knows, David Futrelle is such a crusader for the rights of abused male prisoners. Um, yeah. Right.

Perhaps David Futrelle hasn't noticed--prison rape isn't the focus of this blog. We don't write about tuberculous, either--that doesn't mean we're in favor of it.

If you are scratching your head over this whole thing, trust me--so is everyone else who isn't a radical feminist ideologue.

But wait, David Futrelle isn't finished yet. Make sure you don't read the following on an empty stomach, because this is where David Futrelle tells us everything we need to know about him. David Futrelle suggests, in the most smug, condescending manner, that this blog tries to help rapists beat the rap.

You read that right, but don't trust me, read it and decide for yourself.

What, precisely, is David Futrelle's evidence for this detestable epiphany? Well, it seems that our site links to information about statutes of limitations for rape charges.

If you are wincing and scratching your head asking, "Is that it?" the answer is, yep, that's it.

In David Futrelle's words, we link to the statutes of limitations "in case anyone reading is worried about getting caught [then he crosses off "getting caught"] being falsely accused for something they did [he crosses off "did"] didn’t do a long time ago."

This, apparently, is what passes for humor in David Futrelle's circle. But David Futrelle's callousness is telling, and purposefully hurtful.

Many of the readers of this blog have been wrongly accused--because, guess what? They have few other resources to help them. This blog has received notes from young men telling us that we are responsible for their decisions not to take their own lives. I know--that's scary, and it's a terrible burden to put upon one stupid, unfunded little blog that often misfires. But these young men are so relieved they are not going through their ordeals alone, they take comfort in this silly little blog. And for that I am glad. Yet, David Futrelle thinks we are fair game to ridicule, apparently because we think the wrongly accused are worthy of defense and he thinks our defense detracts from his and others' advocacy for rape victims.

How terribly sad and misguided that someone thinks it is somehow appropriate to advocate for one group by mocking another.

Sigh. As rational people know, we link to the statutes of limitations because of the problems posed to innocent men by the national trend to lengthen and eliminate them. Now, you'd never know this from reading David Futrelle's hate-mongering, but that position is not some goofy, misogynistic, far right, extremist men's rights stance. It's a concern shared by the ACLU and the criminal defense bar and many others. We write about it from time to time, and if you want to understand it, see, e.g., this post:

Why am I not surprised that people who presumably think they are liberals have sided with the witch-hunters when it comes to the statute of limitations?

FEBRUARY 28, 2014: RAINN said to ditch the "rape culture" silliness. RAINN explained: "Rape is caused not by cultural factors but by the conscious decisions, of a small percentage of the community, to commit a violent crime." RAINN decried the "inclination to focus on particular . . . traits that are common in many millions of law-abiding Americans (e.g., 'masculinity'), rather than on the subpopulation at fault: those who choose to commit rape."

That's RAINN--not False Rape Society. Nuff said.

Ugh! As hateful as it gets

Messrs. Elam and O'Hara will discuss it tonight:

Queens rape victim was falsely imprisoned for robberies; now she sues city cops for falling for her attacker's story

I think this one deserves attention, just as much as all the other stories we have here. Not because there was a false rape/sexual assault allegation, but because she was jailed on the lies of her rapist.

Outrage: Girl's rape lie causes one man to be beaten badly, sends boyfriend to prison for three years

The following is the latest in a long line of similar stories this blog reports on a regular basis. It is the reason we have this blog. A girl's rape lie damages two men, and she escapes unscathed. All persons of good will should be outraged.

Jess Cooper, 17, was given the kind penalty usually given for minor traffic infringements after her false rape allegation led to an innocent man being beaten up and another man sent to jail.

Woman Sentenced for Fake Sex Assault Report

A 20-year-old Laguna Niguel woman pleaded guilty Monday to falsely claiming to be the victim of an attempted rape. She was promptly sentenced to 60 days in jail and three years of informal probation.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Indefensible rape survey

A University of Vermont fraternity has been suspended over a "survey" that asked members who they would like to rape. I assume the survey was sick humor, a crude satire of the fratboy culture, and perhaps an imprudent poke at a PC campus culture run amok.  Whatever it was intended to be, ultimately it is indefensible. We have long held the view on this blog that trivializing the word "rape" is no laughing matter, whether it's a joke about the rape of male prisoners, or the fantasy "rape" of women, or a false rape claim intended to get a guy in, or a woman out of, trouble. The word "rape" should be treated as sacred, and used only when it truly occurs. Even though it is unfathomable that this "survey" will cause a single rape, the community of the wrongly accused, of all groups, should appreciate the terrible potential for harm when the word is misused, and should make no exceptions allowing its misuse.

Besides, reverse the genders and imagine if a sorority's "survey" asked, "Which guys would you like to kick in the testicles/beat up/shoot in the leg," and that would also be indefensible, too.

There most certainly will be an outcry in the feminist blogosphere over this isolated incident, and it will be cited as proof positive to support the myth that ours is a  "rape culture."  A "rape culture," of course, not only would tolerate but would condone such a puerile survey.  Our society does neither. The only "rape" jokes our society condones concern the rape of male prisoners, and that's because society actually encourages prison rape and looks the other way when it occurs-- it's a sort of "added bonus" punishment for any hapless male who lands in prison.  (It is ironic that actual prison rape does not garner the outrage that this this sick fratboy humor is generating. Go figure.)

So, if there is an outcry over this, why not over other things, too?

Where was the outcry when a young mother made two false rape claims in ten months that put innocent men at risk because "she likes being the center of attention"?

Where was the outcry when a trial judge coerced a jury into finding a man guilty of rape in a close case?

Where was the outcry when it was reported that the military is charging more and more people with bogus sexual assault cases for the improper purpose of showing it is taking such claims seriously?

Where was the outcry when a licensed psychologist who oversees a team of clinicians in a California prison faked her own brutal rape -- in order to persuade her husband to move?

Where was the outcry when a gipsy camp was burned down in retaliation for a false rape claim?

Where was the outcry when police said that a woman who had previously made other false claims falsely accused a man of rape (and she's still enrolled at the school)?

Where is the outcry when a male student alleged he was expelled for doing exactly what his partner -- who was not expelled -- did: engage in drunken sex?

Where was the outcry over allegations of impropriety about Denison University's handling of sexual assault cases against two male students?

Where was the outcry over a serious proposal at Cornell University that would have done away with a variety of protections for the accused in sex cases, including the University Hearing Board, and would have allowed secret adjudications of the accused's case?

Answer: there was no outcry over any of these -- all of which were reported on this blog in just the past two weeks. Each of these is, arguably, far more serious, and more deserving of an outcry, than the childish rape survey, which has been widely condemned.

We, at FRS, condemn the rape survey. It would be nice if the shrill voices who dominate the public discourse about rape--and who like nothing better than to partake of gender passion plays when the victim is the right gender--wouldn't be so selective about its condemnation of outrages.

The central question posed by this blog that is routinely ignored by our detractors

The vast majority of criticisms leveled against this blog are smug, often profane, attributions of misogyny by extremists whose PC metanarrative finds a peculiar correlation between evil and gender. They invariably support their censure of us with evidence that makes gossamer look like armor plate, and the absence of sophistication in their rants underscores the reasonableness of both our positions and our advocacy.

Our detractors studiously avoid answering -- because, frankly, they don't know enough about the area to answer -- the central question posed by this blog. It is the question that Professor Richard Klein astutely posed: ". . . have the reforms that were designed to counter . . . inequities [in rape law] gone too far? Have the Due Process rights that must be afforded any individual charged with a crime been sacrificed when the charge is rape? Has the pendulum swung so far as to create a system of policies and laws that are fundamentally unfair?" An Analysis of Thirty-Five Years of Rape Reform: A Frustrating Search for Fundamental Fairness, 41 Akron L.Rev. 981, 1052 (2008).

Professor Klein gives a clue about the approach that should be employed to answer this question: "To fully answer that question, one must look at the reforms in their totality. It might well be the case that any single legislative reform was justifiable, but have the odds against the defendant become inappropriate and unjust in a criminal justice system that champions its unique place in the world because of its protections for those charged with crime?"  Id. at 1053. Professor Klein singles out several examples where the pendulum has swung too far, including the fact that in some jurisdictions, an accused can be convicted even if he had a reasonable belief that the woman consented, and even if there was no indication whatsoever of the lack of desire for the intercourse. Id. at 1053. By any measure, to imprison a man for many years because he was not a mind reader is absurd.  (A hint to our detractors about effective advocacy: you'd have far more credibility if you'd at least attack applications of the law that are manifestly unjust, even if they happen to favor the accused.)

Fargo woman pleads guilty to making false statements in sexual assault case

A 26-year-old Fargo woman faces up to eight years in federal prison after pleading guilty to making false statements in a sexual assault investigation, U.S. Attorney Timothy Purdon announced today in a news release.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Off Topic: Mumia Abu-Jamal leaves death row to face prison justice

Mumia Abu-Jamal, the convicted killer of a Philadelphia police officer, has been removed from death row. This is important news for many around the world. The politicized circus that is Abu-Jamal is beyond the scope of this blog. Abu-Jamal was convicted by a unanimous jury after just three hours of deliberation, and despite decades of appeals, his conviction has never been overturned. Yet, he is an international cause célèbre who, for many, symbolizes something much larger than his own case: a terribly flawed and racist justice system.

It is fair to say that many of Abu-Jamal's supporters, both the famous and not-so-famous, have never actually studied the facts of his case. For them, the facts were never really the point, except the ones that fit the narrative that supports Abu-Jamal's innocence. And perhaps that accounts for the pronounced uneasiness about the international attention heaped on Abu-Jamal even by those of us who recognize the many flaws in our system: justice is all about the facts; it can't be divorced from the facts. Politicizing criminal law is fraught with dangers precisely because politicizing anything tends to cause people to disregard, twist, pound, and contort facts to suit a preferred outcome.

And that is not to say that I know that Abu-Jamal was the killer, because I don't. And neither do you.

Bizarre: Police say woman stole five horses from college rodeo team, then lied that theft was in retaliation for an attempted rape

Police say that on November 2, 2011 Jaci Rae Jacksona, a Southern Arkansas University Freshman and rodeo team member, stole five rodeo horses, a livestock trailer, and other items from the rodeo team's stables. The horses belonged to members of the rodeo team. The theft was planned carefully, and Jackson allegedly even carried out research prior to the thefts. 

According to a police affidavit, Jackson had romantic problems with at least one of the owners of the stolen horses, and had told someone that some of the owners of the stolen horses had "made her mad."  Jackson allegedly told a friend that she stole the horses in retaliation for an attempted rape by two male classmates on the rodeo team.

Four of the horses were found alive but malnourished, but one of the horses, named "Credit Card," was found dead. Reportedly, Credit Card was shot, his throat was slit and he was cut into pieces. His remains were found in five different locations. An informant advised police that Jackson stated she wanted the horse killed and that she watched as "Credit Card" was shot in the head and had its throat slit by another actor. Jackson has not been charged in the horse's death.

An Arkansas State Police investigator alleged that Jackson wanted a relationship with the men and lied about the attempted assault.

Jackson has pled not guilty.


Monday, December 12, 2011

The error in Jeff Parrott's thinking, point by point

There is so much wrong with Jeff Parrott's Getting through? How Catholic Colleges are responding to sexual assault, it is almost impossible to know where to begin. The following is a brief, and by no means comprehensive, refutation of Parrott's piece.

Parrott's article purports to be a serious discussion of sexual assault on campus, but it is rife with an unfortunate bias that is manifested, inter alia, by its heavy reliance on the views of financially interested members of what can aptly be called the sexual grievance industry. Parrott is, in fact, more cheerleader than objective journalist here. His piece is practically a love letter to a new order on campus that unjustly puts innocent young men at risk of being punished for offenses they did not commit. He seems blithely unaware that there is another side to the story, and that the pendulum has swung so far in furtherance of a PC agenda (an agenda that finds at least a vague correlation between evil and gender), that injustices to innocent men are occurring--a situation scarcely consonant with Catholic teachings. Parrot's piece is replete with radical notions that he never bothers to challenge.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

False Rape Society Video

The rush-to-judgment rape culture rears its ugly head in Turin: Italian gipsy camp burned down by vigilantes after false rape claim

Italian gipsy camp burned down by vigilantes after false rape claim

A vigilante mob burned down a gipsy camp after an Italian teenager allegedly claimed she had been raped by two Romany men – only to confess later that she had invented the entire story.

It's for good reason that an educated woman who understands the criminal mind believed she wouldn't be doubted when she cried 'rape'

Raping the Benefit of the Doubt by Christine Flowers

In the “truth is both stranger and more disgusting than fiction” department, a California prison psychologist faked being rape so she could get her husband to move to a ‘safer neighborhood.’

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Disturbing False Rape video

Go here: False Rape Claims: Fundamental Social Evils

Trial judge unconstitutionally coerces a jury to find a man guilty in a 'he said, she said' rape case

In State v. Gillikin, 2011 N.C. App. LEXIS 2424 (N.C. App. Dec. 6, 2011), a North Carolina appellate court ordered a new trial in a rape case because the trial judge unconstitutionally coerced a jury into finding the defendant guilty of raping his on-again, off-again girlfriend. The trial court's actions were especially troublesome to the appellate court because the trial was a classic "he said, she said" rape case, where the entire matter came down to the credibility of the accuser and the accused.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Gray area 'he said/she said' college drunken sex should not be ignored, even though we don't know if it was rape

It took a mostly female jury just one hour to acquit a 21-year-old college man of charges that he raped a 20-year-old female classmate at a fraternity party. He burst into tears and trembled after his ordeal had ended.

Woman fakes her own brutal rape to convince her husband to move to a better neighborhood

According to the Sacramento Bee, Laurie Ann Martinez, 36, a licensed psychologist who oversees a team of clinicians who treat inmates with mental health issues in a California prison, wanted to persuade her husband to move to another neighborhood. How do you suppose she did it? She did what any sane and rational woman would do: she convinced a female friend to help her stage a brutal rape.

Woman accused of falsely reporting sexual assault at Spring Arbor University charged with felony

A follow up to our story HERE.

A woman accused of making an untrue claim of a sexual assault in October at Spring Arbor University has been charged with a felony.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Ben Fenton says there are five of us in real life, and we salivate for the day when rape is legal

Click to enlarge comment
 This blog is constantly subjected to attacks by its many detractors; it was for this reason that we were forced to implement comment moderation this past year. I have had rape wished upon me more than once. Above is a screen capture of a comment we received today, more than once, denigrating the falsely accused by an inanity who goes by the name Ben Fenton.

The Community of the Wrongly Accused is opposed by extremists whose PC metanarrative, in a nutshell, finds an unmistakable correlation between evil and gender. They typically attack us with a conclusory, smug attribution of misogyny (e.g., they brand us "rape apologists") because we have the audacity to give voice to persons wrongly accused of rape and to the presumptively innocent for whom a rape accusation often is its own conviction in the court of public opinion.

Since our opponents are incapable of proffering a rational basis for their opposition, they often incant soundbytes premised on untruths, but mostly they resort to puerile, sometimes profane, insults,which merely underscore the absence of any reasoned basis for their disagreement.

Thanks, Ben Fenton, for helping us make our case.

Expelled college man's lawsuit complains that when two intoxicated students have sex, the male is deemed a rapist while the female is deemed a victim

The College of the Holy Cross in Massachusetts expelled a young man the day before he was supposed to graduate last May with a 3.13 grade point average. The expulsion was punishment following a college board's determination that the young man was responsible for raping a female student.  Now the young man, Edwin Bleiler, 23, is suing the school for breach of contract and for violating his civil rights in a case that raises an important issue with possibly widespread implications.

At issue is this: if a male and female college student engage in sexual activity while intoxicated (not incapacitated), should the male be deemed a "rapist" while the female is deemed a "victim"? That's what Mr. Bleiler alleges happened in his case, and if that's correct, it's a gross distortion of even the semblance of equal justice, not to mention a breach of the school's contract with its students.

According to the complaint: “The college’s sexual misconduct policy imposes a form of strict liability on male students: if a male and female student are both intoxicated and engage in sexual activity, the male student could face expulsion for violation of the policy without any evidence of coercion, manipulation, force or any additional culpable behavior.”

The complaint also raises a potentially egregious hearing impropriety. The board was composed of five members, including two students. Both of the student members knew the alleged victim: one was her friend, and the other was her former resident assistant, according to the complaint.  The first student board member was allegedly biased against Mr. Bleiler during the hearing and had to be verbally restrained by the board, the complaint said.  Further, according to the complaint, the administrator's impartiality was also questionable, as she had appeared on National Public Radio contending that most rapes go unreported, with the offenders going free. If these allegations are true, the hearing was tainted with impermissible bias and partiality, and the failure of the two students and the administrator to recuse themselves represents an unpardonable interference with the fair administration of justice.

According to a news report: "The complaint said Mr. Bleiler and others on his behalf spent roughly $220,000 for his education and without a diploma he cannot apply to graduate school nor have any employment prospects commensurate with his education. It is also difficult for him to enroll at another college to finish his degree."

This is not the first time Holy Cross has been charged with running roughshod over the rights of its male students accused of sexual assault. See here All that smoke spewing from Holy Cross is reminiscent of Denison University--it's the reeking, malodorous soot that blots the sky when the U.S. Constitution is tossed into the incinerator, the smoldering burn of students' sacred rights being reduced to ash.

But we are seeing a very positive trend: increasingly, male students who say they've been wronged by skewed college administrative hearing processes are taking their schools to court. In the halls of academia, the one thing that trumps the smug, PC, attribution of evil to young college males is the pain of having to pay out big monetary settlements to those same young males.

Keep it up, men. It's the only thing that's going to force the pendulum to start swinging back toward the middle.


Here is Holy Cross' sexual assault policy:

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Victims don't like to hear it, but they need to be careful not to put themselves in harm's way

I hate to say "you were asking for it," but . . . you were asking for it!  If you get intimate with someone who can hurt you, then you have only yourself to blame when you get hurt.

I am, of course, referring to Los Angeles Lakers forward Devin Ebanks, who was falsely accused of rape. You see, no one thinks twice about "victim blaming" an athlete who is falsely accused of rape. (TMZ reported that the rape allegation was false -- I don't know if that is factual, since there has not been a trial. Sadly, false reporting charges are hardly ever brought in cases where it's fairly certain lies were told.)

You see, the title of this post was a come-on to get your attention. You thought we were victim blaming women who've been raped. Sorry, this blog does not engage in victim blaming rape victims. A woman never "asks" for it. That's long been our position. (E.g., see here where we wrote: "If we were to suggest that a female rape victim 'asked for it' or that she 'reaped what she sowed' merely because she 'parties hard,' we would justifiably be branded as misogynists for such blatant victim blaming. Your comment is no less offensive merely because the vicims here happened to be male.") We do not believe women bear responsibility for being raped by the way they dress. Period.

But we've noticed that, for some reason, it's OK to victim blame men falsely accused of rape. Double standard? The victims of the second most notorious false rape claim in recent years (after Duke lacrosse) were victim blamed in an ugly way. Remember Hofstra? Read this and explain to us what the hell is going on with the victim blaming:

In any event, getting back to Devin Ebanks, assuming the charges were false, read the news report and decide for yourself if "victim blaming" is appropriate in this context:

Interesting take on April 4 'Dear Colleague' letter in Daily Tar Heel

Will Doran in The Daily Tar Heel chimes in with concerns about the Department of Education's lowering of the standard of proof for sex offenses. Mr. Doran generally praises the April 4 letter -- which has been widely criticized by persons concerned about the rights of the presumptively innocent -- even the part about accusers having the right of appeal (despite its serious double jeopardy implications for the accused).

In any event, it's the standard of proof that gives Mr. Doran concern. He notes that "UNC previously required proof 'beyond a reasonable doubt,' a much stricter burden of proof and the one used in criminal trials." Now, all that the school needs is "a 51 percent likelihood of guilt. No hard evidence, no worries." He correctly notes that the reduced standard means "that innocent students could be wrongly convicted, as sexual assault cases are often very complicated and hazy because emotions run high — and substances are often involved."

Mr. Doran attempts to maintain some balance, but he overshoots his mark when he writes the following: "The reasonable doubt standard discourages reporting because many victims think they won’t win and don’t want to relive their pain only to lose the case."

"SlutWalk: Manufacturing Myths about ‘Myths’"

Dad blasts 'attention seeking' daughter after she's jailed for two false rape claims

A YOUNG mum who made two false rape allegations in 10 months was jailed yesterday.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Second male student claims Denison University breached duties owed to him following sexual assault allegation

We often hear the expression "where there's smoke there's fire" in reference to a man accused of sexual assault.  Well, there's plenty of smoke this morning at Denison University, but this time, it's the reeking, malodorous soot that blots the sky when the U.S. Constitution has been tossed into the incinerator--the slow, smoldering burn of students' sacred rights being reduced to ash.

We can't say for certain whether Denison is violating the rights of its students. But recent allegations by not one but two male students suggest that Denison needs to clearly explain itself to the Y-chromosomes of its student body -- it needs to provide its students adequate assurances that their rights aren't being violated.

First, last month, a young man who had been expelled from the school in April 2010 for allegedly sexually assaulting two women settled a lawsuit against the school on confidential terms. We don't know what happened, but we do know what the young man alleged, and the charges are as serious as can be imagined. Among other things, the young man alleged that Denison officials knew the women's statements used to expel him were false.  Further, he alleged that Denison violated its code of conduct requiring an "unbiased hearing" -- because the conduct boards that decided his fate included people who knew the women, including a fellow sorority member. The young man also alleged that he was not permitted to have an attorney at those hearings and was not read his Miranda rights when questioned by Denison's safety director. 

In addition, the counselor who worked with both accusers shredded her notes and one of the women's statements prior to the young man's lawsuit. "Consider the shredding done. I asked permission to shred the notes that I took earlier (University Council). I've just shredded your statements," she wrote. 

Second, last week, another man has filed suit against Denison and a female student he says falsely accused him of sexual assault in connection with an entirely separate incident. The former student was suspended for the 2011-12 academic year after a Denison conduct board determined he had sex with the woman while she was intoxicated and could not consent.

But multiple witnesses said the woman was not impaired and sought the male student out, according to the young man's complaint filed in Licking County Common Pleas Court this past week.

The complaint contends that at a party, the woman told several people she was looking to have sex and she was seen grinding on the man. She led the young man out of party and tugged on his shirt to get him to leave. They had sex in his dorm room and returned to the party, according to the complaint. In the complaint, the suspended student alleged libel, defamation, intentional infliction of emotional distress, breach of contract and other wrongs.

Note that Licking County Prosecutor Ken Oswalt determined he could not pursue charges in connection with this incident since there was no physical evidence and no eyewitness--because the woman said she did not recall the events of that night. Moreover, she did not wish to pursue charges.

Denison is typical of American colleges in institutionalizing added protections for sexual assault accusers, but not for the men they accuse.  See here.  Moreover, Denison is one of the colleges that "guarantee[s] amnesty from sanctions for violations of alcohol policies for victims of sexual assault." See here.  The latter policy raises serious concerns about giving young women a motive to falsely allege rape to avoid punishment for violating the school's alchohol policies.

But now Denison has some serious explaining to do to its male students, and those students (whose annunal tuition bill is in the $40,000-range) need to know whether their rights are being tossed onto a scrapheap of indifference to fulfill a misguided PC agenda.


False Allegation of a Serious Sexual Assault

Detectives investigating an allegation of a serious sexual assault on a young girl in Leeds on Friday night say the allegation is false.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Reports that 20% of young people participate in sexting are wildly exaggerated

According to this: "Only 1 percent of kids aged 10 to 17 have shared images of themselves or others that involve explicit nudity . . . ."  Not 20%, as some studies have found. The 20%, as shown by the article, was overblown.

That's a hell of a discrepancy -- 1% versus 20% -- wouldn't you say? Yet, you can be certain that the 20% figure will continue to be quoted as if it it were true. Why?  You see, if the figure is just 1%, there's no serious problem that needs to be solved, no government funding, and no jobs created.

The sexual grievance industry is like The Music Man where only Professor Harold Hill can get River City out of the terrible, terrible trouble it is in -- terrible trouble that Professor Harold Hill manufactured out of whole cloth.  This is one area where you need to follow the money to understand what's really going on.

The military's sexual grievance industry

Washington’s costly response

By Michael Doyle and Marisa Taylor / McClatchy -Tribune News Service

WASHINGTON — Under the political gun, the Pentagon has bulked up its anti-rape campaign far more than many people realize. It’s expensive, aggressive and imperfect.
“These cases are among the most difficult to handle because of the many thorny issues involved, like ‘he said, she said’ testimony, alcohol use and misuse of military position, and because they impact the ability of soldiers to live and work together,” noted Lisa Schenck, an associate dean at George Washington University Law School who’s a retired Army colonel and a former senior judge on the U.S. Army Court of Criminal Appeals.
Bureaucratically, the Pentagon undeniably has beefed up.
The budget for the Defense Department’s Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Office leapt from $5 million in fiscal 2005 to more than $23 million in fiscal 2010. Once administered by a civilian with a doctorate in counseling, the office is now overseen by an Air Force major general with a background in security.
Total Defense Department spending on sexual assault prevention and related efforts now exceeds $113 million annually.
“The department has placed particular emphasis over the past few years on reducing the stigma associated with reporting incidents, ensuring commanders receive sufficient training and providing appropriate training and resources to investigators and trial counsel,” Defense Department spokeswoman Cynthia Smith said.
Some training aims to prevent misbehavior in the first place, with classes that have titles such as “Sex Signals” and “Can I Kiss You?”
The training gets mixed reviews.
Numerous service members confided that sexual assault and harassment training “is not taken seriously,” the Government Accountability Office noted in 2008. A 2009 Pentagon sexual assault task force likewise warned that some training, heavy on the PowerPoint, was only “marginally effective.”
And some of it can taint the military justice system.
One drink, service members periodically have been taught, renders a woman incapable of consenting to sex. This lesson is easy to remember and it draws a bright line: better safe than sorry. It’s also legally inaccurate and can be dangerous in a courtroom.
With paperwork, too, the Pentagon is reinforcing its campaign against sexual assault. The Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Office’s first annual report, presented in May 2005, covered 10 pages.
By March 2011, the annual report and appendices spanned some 620 pages. It included significant statistical detail and a useful listing of each allegation. It also included ornamentation, such as a photograph of country singer Toby Keith posing with soldiers.
Raw performance sometimes has lagged. Congress directed the Pentagon in October 2008 to complete a comprehensive sexual assault database by January 2010. The Pentagon missed the deadline. Now officials hope to complete the database by August 2012, at an estimated cost of $12 million.
As officials focus attention and galvanize action, their rhetoric can charge ahead of the facts.
In late September, for instance, a California congresswoman took to the floor of the House of Representatives with a frightful tale of military sexual violence.
“Nineteen thousand rapes a year occur in the military,” Democratic Rep. Jackie Speier declared Sept. 22, citing what she called Pentagon estimates.
Speier’s horrific account was the latest in a weekly series she’s delivered all year, spotlighting what she calls the “epidemic of rape and sexual assault in the military.” Equally bad, she says, is military indifference.
“The Department of Defense still testifies that there are 19,000 rapes that occur in the military every year,” Speier said in a House speech on June 15, “and we have done nothing about it.”
Speier was misspeaking; usually her written statements refer to 19,000 “rapes and sexual assaults,” rather than rape alone. Even this, though, can be exaggerated.
By all accounts, rapes are underreported. The intimately violent crime can shame any victim into silence.
Last year, the military received 3,158 reports of sexual assault. Rape accounted for about one-quarter of the total. If only one in five military rapes is reported, as the Pentagon estimates, the annual number would be about 3,900.
The 19,000 number Speier cited was an extrapolation based on a survey of 2 percent of the military. It referred, moreover, to any form of “unwanted sexual touching.” This covered everything from a slap on the bottom to fondling to rape.
Speier, introducing a bill in November to impose a new system for handling military sexual assaults, further declared that “for too long, the military’s response to rape victims has been, ‘Take an aspirin and go to bed.’” The sound bite was vivid, but it referred to a comment allegedly made in 1985 to Navy enlisted woman Terri Odam.
Since Odam’s long-ago experience, part of the military’s increasingly aggressive response involves training specialized personnel. More than 10,000 trained “victims’ advocates” now serve in the Army, Navy, Marine Corps and Air Force. In addition, more than 500 sexual assault response coordinators serve military installations and units.
The Senate is considering a defense authorization bill that would change, once more, the military law provisions. The prospects for the bill are unknown.

Woman sent to prison for false rape claim

A 30-year-old woman has been sent to prison in Guernsey after falsely claiming she was raped.

Joanna Gallienne admitted perverting the course of justice and was been given a 13 week sentence.

She was in a civil partnership with another woman when the incident happened in May.

Police investigated the matter although they did not believe her. The man involved was never arrested.


Friday, December 2, 2011

Rape Culture Backfires

Guest op-ed by blogger Elusive Wapiti:

In this even-handed and balanced news article, we can see that rape culture does indeed generate sufficient political pressure to do something, anything, about rape. But what price appearances for politics sake? For in the end, rape culture of this sort harms the real, genuine victims and manufactures more victims by obscuring the relationship between risky behaviors and sexual assault, all while wasting scarce resources and unjustifiably branding men with the scarlet "R":
McClatchy's review of nearly 4,000 sexual assault allegations demonstrates that the military has taken a more aggressive stance. Last year, military commanders sent about 70 percent more cases to courts-martial that started as rape or aggravated sexual-assault allegations than they did in 2009.

However, only 27 percent of the defendants were convicted of those offenses or other serious crimes in 2009 and 2010, McClatchy found after reviewing the cases detailed in the Defense Department's annual sexual assault reports. When factoring in convictions for lesser offenses - such as adultery, which is illegal in the military, or perjury - about half the cases ended in convictions.

The military's conviction rate for all crimes is more than 90 percent, according to a 2010 report to Congress by the Pentagon.
. . . .
Making acquittals even more likely, the military is prosecuting more contested cases under a controversial law that broadens the definition of sexual assault. Under the 2006 law, the military can argue that a victim was sexually assaulted because she was "substantially incapacitated" from excessive drinking and couldn't have consented.
. . . .
"There is a pressure to prosecute, prosecute, prosecute. When you get one that's actually real, there's a lot of skepticism. You hear it routinely: 'Is this a rape case or is this a Navy rape case?'"
Analyzing the numbers in the graphic at the top of the linked article suggests that the tens of millions spent on forcibly implanting a rape culture in the Defense Department hasn't appreciably changed the data much, at least when compared with the civilian sector. According to the data presented, an individual rape and/or sexual assault accusation will result in a courtroom conviction 7% of the time. Including those who resign or accept discharges in lieu of a trial boosts "conviction rates" to almost 10%. Which, incidentally, is the going conviction rate for an individual rape/sexual assault allegation in the UK (could not find reliable figures for the US).

Now it is true that those accused can accept non-judicial punishment in lieu of a court-martial, and that option does muddy the analysis a bit, for we do not know if those fellows were punished non-judicially for rape/sexual assault or some other infraction surrounding the accusation. It would also seem to me that if the government had any kind of a case, in the face of all that rape culture pressure to prosecute, that the government would not offer or accept offers of non-judicial punishment in lieu of court-martial.

So I wonder: is inculcating a rape culture in DoD worth all that extra money, unneeded aggravation and decreased morale, additional broken women, more unfairly tarred men, and no appreciable change in the conviction rates? If not, then why bother?

AP man not guilty in sexual assault trial

SEBRING - After four-and-half years, Wesley Noah Cook got his day in court on Monday.
A jury of his peers found Cook not guilty of having sex with a 17-year-old under his foster care after just an hour of deliberations.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Josh Lueke paid his debt to society, but that's not good enough for some


Cornell nixes plan for secret resolution of sexual assault cases that would strip accused students of critical rights

Just when you thought college disciplinary proceedings couldn't get any less fair to men accused of sexual assault, Cornell University seriously considered a plan that would have done just that. Fortunately, the plan was scuttled yesterday, but the fact that this proposal got as far as it did, and that it had as much support as it did, underscores an undesirable politicization of sexual assault on campus. Read this one to the end -- the statement at the end by a member of the school's Women’s Resource Center Advisory Board is eye-opening.

Cleveland school official's children charged with lying about rape

Liberty County sheriff's detectives have arrested two children of the Cleveland Independent School District board president for allegedly lying to police about an alcohol-fueled party at their home where a teenage girl says she was raped, authorities said.