Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Opposing False Allegation By Making Unproven Allegation

From the Daily Mail article titled BBC personality made 40 false rape allegations against her ex-boyfriend whose life remains blighted by her lies by Antonia Hoyle, I initially assumed that the story was about a woman convicted of filing 40 false police reports.

The story opens with:

A BBC personality has shattered her ex-boyfriend's life by falsely accusing him of rape. The woman, who has broadcast to television audiences of millions, accused him of raping her 40 times throughout their two-and-a-half-year relationship.

This makes more sense that this story is about a women convicted of making one huge false accusation. However, I quickly found out this woman has not been charged with this crime she has been accused of and declared guilty of.

The lies by a BBC personality are alleged lies.

Rather than championing a man falsely accused, Hoyle may be championing a man rightfully accused and helping that man make a false accusation in revenge for a woman making a rightful accusation against him. He is clearly interested in sabotaging this woman's career and her professional ambition is presented as further proof of her guilt.

The woman who reported these rapes is characterized as vengeful but that description clearly matches this man as well.

This man has not been proven innocent.

This is specifically mentioned in the police record. An investigator wrote: 'There is insufficient additional verifiable information to determine that no notifiable offence has been committed.'

Despite the lack of evidence, the incident remains on the Police National Computer thanks to a legal loophole, which campaigners say is blighting the lives of falsely accused men.

Even if the 'victim' withdraws their allegation, it will show up under enhanced Criminal Records Bureau checks that are undertaken regularly on people who apply for jobs with employers such as the NHS or schools. It will also prevent them from travelling to the United States.

This "loophole" of being in the PNC, as this story puts it, is important and necessary. It should not be removed. Many rapists have a long history of accusations which didn't result in convictions. This pattern is meaningful and should cause the investigators to rethink any quick assumptions that a new allegation is false because the alleged rapist doesn't seem like that kind of person.

Only if an allegation has been proven to be false should someone's name be removed. This allegation has not been proven to be false.

The appropriateness of the actions taken against those who haven't been convicted is a separate issue. But this issue applies just as much to this woman who is being written about as if she were already convicted.

Fewer than six per cent of reported rapes result in a conviction, but according to Tim Murray of the False Rape Society, this case is typical.

This assessment of this case as typical is opinion and based only on the unproven allegations on the part of a man accused of rape.

People like Murray claim to be against passing judgment based on unproven allegations, but this quote disproves that claim. He's okay with this as long as that judgment is made against those who report having been raped. In fact he's just passed judgment on more than one woman, he has passed judgment on all those who reported rape and whose cases didn't result in a conviction.

This case is only typical in the way it is handled and how often those who report rape stop cooperating and how often those who report rape are subsequently tainted as guilty from people who claim to be against this practice.

This BBC personality's report has been declared false because she later retracted her allegation. This is not the same as proof of guilt on her part. It isn't even a strong indicator of guilt since there are many reasons why real rape victims would stop cooperating and retract their allegations.

The number one reason is that a real rape victim realizes that she has become the only suspect because of investigator bias and training which encourages investigators to quickly turn on those who report rape if there are any inconsistencies.

In the interviews with survivors of the US Air jet which crashed into the Hudson River I noted many inconsistencies. People were panicking. Nobody panicked. Everybody knew the plane was going to crash. One woman didn't realize they had crashed until she was told to evacuate out an emergency door. Survivors talked about remembering new details days after the crash. Despite these inconsistencies we know the jet crashed.

Yet again and again in rape cases the presence of inconsistencies is presented as absolute proof that the reported crime couldn't have happened.

These inconsistencies can be details which don't make sense to the investigator. The problem is that investigators bring their biases about real rape to their analysis which can easily taint the investigation. This bias is especially common when rapes are reported against someone the victim had a relationship with.

Many people don't believe there can be repeated rapes within a relationship because -- if they believe rape can happen within a relationship -- they assume they would leave the relationship after the first rape and that anyone who didn't leave must have consented and is only expressing bitterness. This story plays on those assumptions.

This story has been picked up by several anti-feminist blogs which vocally oppose assuming guilt -- of men. It is telling that so many people are eager to do the very thing they claim to be against as long as the person they are assuming to be guilty is a woman who reported rape.

This woman has not been proven guilty.

Those who talk as if she has been proven guilty have in fact only proven that they have no credibility on the subject of false accusations.

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posted by Marcella Chester @ 8:02 AM   1 comments links to this post


At January 27, 2009 11:29 AM, Blogger JENNIFER DREW said...

Perhaps the Daily Male should have focused on the case of Ian Huntley (who resides in the UK) and who was subsequently convicted of murdering two young girls who knew him because of his work at the school they attended. Yet another case of non-stranger male violence against females.

Huntley had been allowed to be employed as caretaker at a primary school despite having nine allegations of rape, sexual assault, indecent assault on girls and young women as well as allegations of interpartner violence. The police forces responsible for investigating these allegations conveniently 'erased' Huntley's file. When Huntley applied to work
at this primary school, his background was checked because he would be in contact with children. Police on checking the Police National Computer discovered no details pertaining to Huntley so he was then employed by the school as a caretaker. Only when Huntley had been convicted of brutally murdering two young girls he knew did the public learn of the large number of allegations made against him and that in many instances there had been a clear modus operandi. Yet two police forces did not investigate further.

As Marcella rightly points out the survivors of the US Air jet which crashed in the Hudson river had conflicting stories. Some survivors could only remember additional details a few days later. This is in fact common irrespective whether events are accidental or a crime is alleged to have been committed. So are all these survivors lying because their 'evidence' conflicts and they are not all 'singing the same tune?' Of course in cases of rape it would not matter because if two or more women were give almost identical evidence to police, describing how their male attacker raped them there would then be claims these women colluded in fabricating such evidence. At present it is still a no-win situation for most female rape survivors and almost 95% chance of men committing rape in the UK and not being convicted for their crimes. The reasons are complex but one very important aspect is the widespread belief men charged with rape do not lie whereas women and girls who allege rape are all inherent liars.

The Daily Male has a very long history of presenting biased and one-sided reporting with regards to males committing rape and as such their articles must be treated with caution. Impartiality is supposed to be paramount when reporting news but as we see, impartiality becomes one-sided whenever reporting involves allegations of men committing rape against women or girls.


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