Friday, September 11, 2009

Nightclub Surveillance Video Contributes To Man's Guilty Plea

From WCAX:
Prosecutors say the 23-year-old woman had passed out on a couch at Marquee Nightclub in Manhattan on March 22. Court documents said surveillance video showed [Luis] Zambrano fondling the unconscious woman, then dragging her down a flight of stairs and out the building. Prosecutors say he took the woman back to his home and raped her.
Zambrano pleaded guilty only to attempted kidnapping and attempted rape, but unfortunately this is outcome is better than many cases which are dropped because the victim can't testify about what was done to her because she was unconscious. Three and a half years is a paltry sentence, but again too often this is a better outcome than other similar cases where there is only testimony about what was done.

If more bars add surveillance videos covering all of their exits which have enough resolution to positively identify the suspect some men like Zambrano will stop assuming that they are committing a crime for which they can never be successfully punished. That increased concern about punishment may deter some would-be rapists. To make this concern even greater more people need to view what Zambrano did as a serious crime which must have serious negative consequences for the perpetrator.

Passing out from too much drink is not a crime, kidnapping and rape are crimes: very serious ones. Too many people still seem to have trouble grasping these basic facts and therefore judge rape victims such as this woman much more harshly than they judge those women's rapists.

Opportunity should never be a valid defense for rape any more than opportunity is a valid defense for murdering someone who has passed out from too much drink.


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posted by Marcella Chester @ 8:39 AM   0 comments links to this post


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