Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Man Admits Rape Of 13 Year Old But Defends Himself By Claiming Victim No Virgin

From The National Life:

Nothing in his appearance suggests he could be a comedian. With his bulky, tall frame, Moses Achawanike strikes you as exactly what he is: A mean criminal with an evil mind. But penultimate week, the 42-year-old rape suspect threw the entire Ojodu Divisional Police Headquarters, Lagos into a frenzy when he confessed to the rape of 13-year-old [name redacted] but insisted he did not meet the girl a virgin.

The suspect, whose countenance portrayed him as a man with a long history in the criminal act, argued that deflowering a virgin is accompanied with loss of blood by the female. His words: “When I did not see any blood, I knew she had been doing it before”. [...]

“I said I wanted her to buy something for me. She entered and I did it. I told her not to make any noise. I did not intimidate her. I only promised it won’t be painful. She then cooperated and I did it”, he said.

This story is out of Nigeria, but unfortunately many of the attitudes openly expressed by this man are too common no matter where a child rapist lives. In some countries those who hold these attitudes are more careful about revealing their beliefs or they reveal these beliefs in a more roundabout way.

Telling a 13-year-old girl to not make any noise is intimidation and is also a threat that if she doesn't comply there will be undeniable pain. I've lost track of the number of times that this type of excuse about a lack of overt threat or overt violence is used to claim consent or to say that what was done doesn't rise to the level of real rape.

Whether this girl was a virgin or not is irrelevant, but for too many people this is the only detail which matters. For those people if the rape victim wasn't a virgin then either that victim asked for it or there was no violation or trauma.

While this story describes this man as criminal with an evil mind, it also blames the victim.
[the alleged victim], who lives in the neighbourhood, innocently fell into his trap. She could have detoured and saved herself such assault if she had declined to run errand for Moses.
This statement makes agreeing to run an errand for an adult as the cause of rape when it is no such thing. Neighbors of this man are described as not viewing him as a potential rapist, yet a 13-year-old girl is supposed to know that she was dealing with a potential rapist.

For the majority of crimes if the crime victim had detoured in some way prior to the crime that person would have been saved from violence. But if this girl were raped by a stranger as she ran the errand for this man then I doubt this story would place the burden of prevention onto her.

Moses provides the police with his rationalizations and expected those rationalizations to exonerate him from wrongdoing.

He recalled: “When I saw the police, I knew that the girl had revealed the secret. I could not do anything than to follow them and tell the truth. I am saying the truth to shame the devil. I know the implication of what I did, that is why I am pleading for leniency. And I will not do it again”.

A bachelor at 42, Moses insisted on his promise, saying, “I would rather look for somebody to marry.”

So not only is the victim to blame, the economy and his marital status are to blame. This "truth" isn't genuine truth, it is rationalization. Being able to convince himself that he did nothing wrong is not or should not be a viable defense.

The story closes with character assassination against the alleged victim:

While Moses is paying the price of his insatiable sexual urge behind the bars, National Life also gathered that the girl was not like the girl next door. A source disclosed that she had in the recent past exhibited a trait of a deviant.

“There was a time they found her in a questionable place on the street around 11pm, when she was expected to be in the cool comfort of her parents’ home. Nobody complained of anything then but one can deduce that she was already exposed to such indecencies”, the source said.

This dismissal of the confessed actions as nothing more than an insatiable sexual urge is common in many countries as is the nasty rumor about the alleged rape victim. If anything, the details if true, mean that this girl has likely been victimized multiple times.


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posted by Marcella Chester @ 10:28 AM   0 comments links to this post


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