Friday, June 13, 2014

Judge Determines That Victim Doesn't Look Like Victim

 Judge Christopher McFadden, a Georgia Court of Appeals judge has overturned a rape verdict because the Downs Syndrome victim didn't act like a victim and the rapist didn't act like he had just committed a violent crime. This is despite his semen found on the victim's sheets and a doctor testifying that she had been raped. The judge ordered a retrial.

I cannot believe the arrogance of this judge to think he knows how a rape victim is going to act, like there is a set way that all of us react. He would surely have called me a liar when I finally started talking about my incest rapes. How does a rape victim act?

What we feel often doesn't show on our faces or by our behavior. Many of us shut down our feelings just to survive. I know that there are differences in being raped violently by a stranger or on a date rape or by a relative who he hates you and takes all of his anger out on you when he rapes you. My rapes weren't violent but I don't know that I was any less frightened by the acts of my dad or my uncle. The if you tell threats were there with me every day. Fear was such a constant in my childhood that I tuned it out most of the time in order to carry on like normal. I wore a mask of shyness and quiet all of the time. My friends at school gave me a surrounding of love that I didn't feel at home.

I feel so sad for the young woman in this case. She will needlessly have to sit in the room with her rapist again because this judge thinks he knows how a rape victim is supposed to react. If I lived in Georgia, I might would have to go to court and protest this judge not doing his job of protecting the victim.  

Here is the link for this article about this case.

Judge overturns rape verdict because the victim "didn't behave like a victim" @ 


Mary Graziano said...

Pat, thank you for posting this. How dare he!!!! Let him walk in the shoes of many innocent victims of rape, then let's see what he would say. I didn't know that there was a certain way for victims of rape to act? For many, silence is what the abuser counts on, and as children, we are afraid, very afraid of what our abuser will do to us or our families if we told. A "special needs" child is so traumatized, not fully understanding what has happened, and will shut down...I wish I was there also Pat, I would for certain go with you. <3

Patricia Singleton said...

Mary, You are very welcome. I know you would go with me. <3