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False allegations of rape

By Scott Tibbs, September 26, 2008

I am surprised that there have not been more letters to the editor responding to Deke Hager's remark in his September 11 column in the Herald-Times that "Fall is when false rape claims are made by young women who are depressed and lonely and who need attention." I am also mildly surprised that Indira Dammu (president of the IU Women's Student Association) recognized in her letter to the editor that false allegations of rape are real, writing that "those who falsely report rapes are often criminally prosecuted."

Of course, we know it happens. We saw a very high-profile example of a false allegation made by Crystal Gail Mangum against the Duke Lacrosse team in 2006, and we saw it with Tawana Brawley in the late 1980's. We have seen it happen right here in Bloomington Indiana, in September 2006 and March 2007:

An 18-year-old IU freshman who reported she was the victim of a sexual assault on Sept. 3, and the victim of a battery on Aug. 29, admitted Friday that she fabricated both reports, IU police said.
Police say the student’s admission she made a false report came during an interview at the Indiana University Police Department. The original purpose of the interview was to resolve more than 30 inconsistencies in her account of the two incidents. IUPD Detective Sgt. Leslie Slone discovered the discrepancies while interviewing individuals who had information in the two cases.

Source: Herald-Times, September 9, 2006

The Indiana University student who said she was abducted and raped by two men last month recanted her story to authorities Thursday afternoon, admitting that she concocted the story, police said.

The 19-year-old woman told investigators earlier this week that she’d been abducted by two men as she walked home from work on the night of Feb. 22.

But during a follow-up interview with Indiana University Police Department Detective Sgt. Leslie Slone on Thursday, the woman admitted she’d made the story up, police said.

IUPD Capt. Jerry Minger said the woman told Slone she engaged in consensual sex with a man at a local motel that night.

Source: Herald-Times, March 30, 2007

Next week, I will be attending the "Take Back the Night" march on the IU campus, as I have done for several years now. It a sad reality that violence against women is still common in this society and "Take Back the Night" provides an important service in reminding us of this reality. I encourage anyone reading this blog to attend the rally and march next Tuesday, September 30, at 6 p.m. in Dunn Meadow. Be there to show support for victims of domestic violence and to help create a culture where it is not accepted. I especially urge conservatives to attend. We may not agree with some of the sponsors, but this is an area where we can all agree and work together.

In addition, true supporters of rape victims openly and vigorously oppose false accusations of rape. False accusations of rape, like those made by the un-named IU students in the articles above, make it more difficult for real rape victims to come forward. The un-named IU student slapped every rape victim in this community in the face when she fabricated a "rape" that never took place.