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An alleged rape victim who changed her mind during sex, villified by press after man acquitted.

(21 Posts)
KindDogsTail Sun 12-Mar-17 16:40:58

I read an article in the Sunday Times today by a columnist saying she would need to teach her son to get an agreement before having sex. I cannot send a link. She cited this recent case in which the man has recently been acquitted. I link it here from another paper. www.yorkpress.co.uk/news/15130352.York_rape_trial__Defendant_gives_evidence/
www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2017/03/03/alleged-rape-drunken-undergraduate-typical-world-modern-students/
www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4276506/Drunken-student-18-accuses-man-raping-her.html
www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4290336/Graduate-24-CLEARED-raping-university-student.html

The columnist in the Sunday Times today thanked goodness for the commonsense of the jury.

The student had been drinking and told her flatmate she intended to 'pull'. When she met the man, she told him she wanted sex with him. She was seen on CTV going back to her room with him and in the lift with him kissing. So far consent. But then once the sex had started she said it went weird and she had stopped consenting. When the man went to the bathroom to be sick, she went and got her flatmates and the man was ejected by security. She had love bites on her neck and bruising in her chest. A few days later she accused him of rape.

He felt entirely innocent. The consensus was that she had consented.
I feel troubled. What if his idea of sex was something she realised she no longer wanted to consented to?

One paper suggested that she was meeting her father the next day and might have been embarrassed by the love bites.

She is certainly being blamed along the lines of: you get drunk, you openly say you are going out to pull, you openly take the man home with you, you have consensual sex, then have regrets when it is over and cry 'rape'. Are you mad? What are ours sons to do?

Here is something from the Telegraph along those lines.

www.telegraph.co.uk/women/life/false-rape-claims-living-not-always-right-people/

This is what the judge said, according to one newspaper:
Judge Andrew Stubbs QC had told the jury: 'The defence say that everything that took place on that bed was consensual then for some reasons she has fled the room and fabricated the allegation of rape and fabricated the injuries. If that is right your verdict should be not guilty.'

I feel uneasy about the judge saying this. It seems to me that the judge was telling them what their verdict should be.

In one paper it says a female flatmate said her friend told her: ‘It just got a bit weird and she was not into it. It was a little bit rough and she decided she wanted it to stop.’ I think she had the right to decide this.

Having said this, I think it sounds as though the man truly believes he is innocent.

I wondered what other posters think about this case?

I think she should have been able to change her mind.

ImperialBlether Sun 12-Mar-17 16:43:50

Given it started off consensual, he should have stopped the very second that changed. She wouldn't have to say anything, but if she indicated in any way she wasn't up for it any more, he should have stopped.

If I were on the jury, that's what I'd be looking out for.

Gallavich Sun 12-Mar-17 16:44:18

Of course you can withdraw consent at any point. It sounds very much like he started hurting her and wouldn't stop, so he raped her if that was the case.
Seriously hard to prove though sadly. All the circumstantial evidence leads to reasonable doubt.

Toobloodytired Sun 12-Mar-17 16:45:36

What if he did stop when she said but decided she still "felt" raped

StealthPolarBear Sun 12-Mar-17 16:46:11

I was on jury service recently. The judge made a few statements along the lines of "if you think x you must return a verdict of guilty/not guilty". As he explained it our job was to ascertain the facts and he was there to guide us on the legal aspects of what those facts led to

Bundesliga Sun 12-Mar-17 16:47:14

Yes, at any point during consensual sex, a person can chose to stop and should be free to do so. For any reason at all.

I agree, imperial

ImperialBlether Sun 12-Mar-17 16:47:59

There will be just as many who, during the act itself, have decided that foregoing that third Brandy Alexander and going home to watch Newsnight might have been the better option.

Which planet is Allison Pearson on if she thinks this relates in any way to a student's world?

And why does she write like a Daily Mail columnist?

Mehfruittea Sun 12-Mar-17 16:50:55

How did she communicate her decision to him? Was she clear and how quickly after that did it stop?

Not excusing any behaviours: when a drunk man is going at it, so to speak, they can be clumsy, crap and a bit slow to listen/quick to finish. In my experience.

It's not about regret the next day but how you communicate a change of mind during the act itself.

If you say 'stop' and he immediately says 'oh oh oh' and comes... could he really have stopped at that point?!

I'm ready to be flamed now. But please stop when I say so!

ChocChocPorridge Sun 12-Mar-17 17:00:05

I think as a woman who's had men not stop, or put pressure more than is convenient more times than I really want to think about (and, obviously in the spirit of 'not all men' have also had men who knew to wait until we were both sober before getting up to anything), it's going to colour how we see this.

Perhaps he does truly believe he's innocent, but if the person who had the penis put in her doesn't think that, is it really right that his feelings override hers? Is the fact that the damage is already done to her, but his can yet be avoided (apart from the stress of the accusation) enough of a reason to give him the benefit of the doubt?

Perhaps he believes he's innocent, but classes rape as something forced with threats, not something coerced, or taken without permission.

We don't know.

I know that I'll be teaching my sons that like driving, it's always better to have sex sober (at least until you're parents and have to cram all your fun into a few hours snatched around young kids... then a tiddly bonk is pretty much all you'll be able to manage!). A few hours of patience will not kill you, but raping someone is unforgivable.

ChocChocPorridge Sun 12-Mar-17 17:02:54

If you say 'stop' and he immediately says 'oh oh oh' and comes... could he really have stopped at that point?!

Well there was a time when DP got cramp at a vital moment, that stopped him pretty quick, or when we were in a hotel room, and part way through it became clear that there was something in the room affecting my breathing because I was wheezing and unable to speak - he jumped off pretty quick then too!

Oh or an ex who preferred to delay it by grabbing the end of his penis and deep breathing for a few seconds before getting back at it...

So yes. If they wanted, they could

LassWiTheDelicateAir Sun 12-Mar-17 17:07:58

Alison Pearson is an idiot. I can't read the full article as it's behind a pay wall but I have no doubt it will be idiotic.

On this particular case there are not enough facts in the reports about when she changed her mind or how she communicated that to him so I agree with Mehfruit.

WobblyLegs5 Sun 12-Mar-17 17:21:41

Meh is that really likely in this case though? Is it likely/reasonable that money would be spent on a trial where this happened? Is it likely any women will put themselves through the reality of a rare trial/being cross exx mined etc plus medical pressumabley if she hasn't felt violated and hurt? & is it likely that she would feel that way strongly if he just didnt quite hear her & then went thrust-ooohhh-slump?

Just because it could possibley be a hypothetical that some young drunk nieve guy might not realise in the heat of the moment that the girl has had enough doesn't make it likely in a case where that girl puts herself through a rape trial & the country risks the cost of prosecuting.

KindDogsTail Sun 12-Mar-17 17:38:30

I don't know if anyone has the Sunday Times, It can't be linked. If I buy it later I'll remember the columnist who was not Alison Pearson who took a similar approach.

I agree with Meh too, but I do not like it being taken that if you get drunk and go out to pull and take some one back with you, then all that is consent - no more questions need to be asked: Oh my poor sons, they are going to be falsely accused of rape. I think Choc's idea is a better one as far as sons are concerned.

Also, I don't think that men should assume that consent in the first instance means consent necessarily goes on, though I can see its very difficult to put up with a mind change. Furthermore it does not mean consent to any sort of sex a man might go on to fancy in the middle, especially given the reported influence of violent porn on young men. Not that I know what the girl had meant by 'things got weird'.

I do not know why the judge said she had 'fabricated' evidence, when he more or less directed a guilty verdict. I am not sure if there was a reason for him saying that, as I did not see anything else written about her having fabricated evidence in the various reports.

LassWiTheDelicateAir Sun 12-Mar-17 17:45:50

I do not know why the judge said she had 'fabricated' evidence, when he more or less directed a guilty verdict

He didn't say that. He was summing up what the defence said. He will have summed up the prosecution case as well.

KindDogsTail Sun 12-Mar-17 17:52:11

I agree Wobbly it seems improbable. The only reason I can imagine is family pressure, say her father, whom she was about to meet shortly after the alleged rape, pushing for a prosecution. Then the events unfolded and gained momentum.

But I am left feeling that the real issue taken into account was that she basically consented in what would be considered a particularly upfront way at first - given she had even set out in a predatory way to find any man that night so that, in practice, this counted for more than anything else. That, in practice, there was no change of mind allowed - no jury would feel it reasonable to send a young man to prison after he had been led on so far.

KindDogsTail Sun 12-Mar-17 17:59:22

Lass, thanks, I read it again. You are right he did not say she fabricated evidence, the defence did.

I wonder if he also would have said, "If the prosecution say he....... If that is right then your verdict should be guilty." ? So as to leave the jury with an impartial impression of his own view as the judge. (I am not being sarcastic, just wondering.)

WobblyLegs5 Sun 12-Mar-17 18:12:03

Duno if I would call her actions predatory. If a guy says he's going on there pull it wouldn't be considered predatory. Even though it's much more likely he would be than a female.

LassWiTheDelicateAir Sun 12-Mar-17 18:17:15

I wonder if he also would have said, "If the prosecution say he....... If that is right then your verdict should be guilty." ? So as to leave the jury with an impartial impression of his own view as the judge. (I am not being sarcastic, just wondering.)

I was obviously not in that court, but yes, that is how it is meant to work.

LassWiTheDelicateAir Sun 12-Mar-17 18:18:59

Duno if I would call her actions predatory. If a guy says he's going on there pull it wouldn't be considered predatory

I would not call her predatory. I do think a man saying that would be.

KindDogsTail Sun 12-Mar-17 18:25:25

Wobbly
Well, guys might be called that sometimes, for example, in the case of the groups of Durham University older male students who reportedly would go out in freshers week to go "Seal clubbing", I would call them predatory.

But I agree, predatory was not a good term here. I thought that was how the jury might have seen it though, in that she found the man after setting out to look for anyone - so why say he was the perpetrator.

Proactively looking to have sex with someone would be a better term in this case.

Because of the evidence that she had said she would be doing that ["pulling"], her consent all the way along to the end was assumed.

HelenDenver Sun 12-Mar-17 22:16:24

Could a man stop immediately if his mum walked in? If a burglar smashed the window?

Yes, and yes. Then a man can stop immediately to prevent a crime too.

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