Alleged Rape by cadet at college party

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by Lizzy, Oct 22, 2011.

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  1. Lizzy

    Lizzy New Member

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    My daughter has a friend in ROTC who went to a party with mostly ROTC people. There was plenty of drinking at the party and her friend let a male cadet whom she apparently trusted fix her a few drinks. She then fell asleep on the couch and in the middle of the night this same boy removed her clothes and fondled her and maybe more, but she doesn't remember much. She sounds like she was drugged. I told my daughter to make sure her friend gets to the local rape counseling center this week and I told my daughter that her friend needs to report this. The girl is afraid to because she was drinking and she is underage. I guess she is up for a ROTC scholarship and is afraid of not getting it. I think it needs to be reported and this boy should be punished.

    Does anyone with ROTC experience have any suggestions as to what she should do? I think that even though she was drinking, so were all of the other ROTC people there and that whatever trouble she would get into would be minor as to the boy's consequences.
     
  2. jlwilkes101

    jlwilkes101 Member

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    I wish I could come up with a better answer, with information about the consequences of coming out. I hope someone else can. All I know is, that cadet cannot become an officer. There has to be a way to make sure that doesn't happen. For the sake of the integrity of the armed forces, for the sake of the people that cadet could later have power over, that can't happen.
     
  3. Blacklab

    Blacklab Member

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    Sad...

    This is very sad.

    A persons medical information is one of their top 10 federal protected rights. She is also a minor, this also plays a part of protection. This is a violent crime it should not matter who was there. In fact if someone saw what was going on it should have been stopped.

    Regardless of the drinking if she was drugged & rapped it's a violent criminal offense. This is not her fault and I can only assume it would not be held against her standing regarding NROTC. I'm not a police officer, lawyer, doctor, or a board member, I'm a father of two boys, a daughter, and a wonderful wife.

    The police would say report...
    The lawyer would say report...
    The board would say report...
    The doctor has to make the report...
    A mother would say report...
    As a father of a daughter I would say report before I got involved...

    I can almost assure you the drinking will not be the issue with the board, the rape is the issue! She did not asked to be part of such a vilolent crime.

    Any upstanding person would completely understand her situation and would say make the report. This young man needs to be taken care of by the police ASAP.

    It's difficult to think in her shoes because I'm not her and cant even imagine what this young lady is going through. Maybe she could give some thought to the what if. What if this happens again... It could become worse for the next girl. My daughter is 11 please report him. My wife is 45 please report him. There are millions of other daughters and wifes that are loved and card for, please report him. This is a violent crime that no woman should have to live in pain with.

    I think I can speak for many of us and say our thoughts and prayers are with your daughter and her friend.
     
  4. Aglahad

    Aglahad Member

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    If I was her I would try to get the story as straight as possible by asking people who were there as to what actually happened. Maybe she was drugged or just drank too much (freshman right?), either way she needs to formulate the events as best as possible to proceed with getting this guy prosecuted if he did indeed rape her. The problem is actually proving he committed the act of rape. With alcohol flowing and hazy memories you will need all the help from others as you can get, which is where a possible rape test as well as interviews with partygoers could come into play.

    Consequences for the guy: Kicked out of ROTC as well as the school with criminal charges.

    Her role in the party should not have any serious impact as rape obviously super cedes underage drinking, however for scholarship purposes it might ( I am not a ROO so I can't say for sure and underage drinking is pretty common).

    I wish the best outcome for her.
     
  5. Jcleppe

    Jcleppe Member

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    This is something that would need to be investigated by the local or campus police. Until that investigation is complete there are no way of knowing what happened.

    The AROTC will look at each cadet as an individual case. Will the female cadet lose a chance at a scholarship, probably, will she be allowed to stay in ROTC, that will depend on the cadre but if she did not receive a citation for drinking there may be a chance she can stay.

    Any scholarship cadet that was drinking at the party and under age risks losing their scholarship, some could also be removed from the program.

    The fact that there was underage drinking and the presumed victim admitted to having several drinks will be a separate issue from any accusations she makes. It sounds like this will not turn out well for anyone involved.

    The cadet that is accused by the friend of the posters daughter would be investigated by the local or campus police, if there is enough evidence to charge the cadet and he is convicted of any crime he will definatly be removed from ROTC and not allowed to enter the military.

    When making comments about this story everyone needs to be careful to add a "If the cadet did this" until an investigation is completed.
     
  6. Aglahad

    Aglahad Member

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    This is true, too often do people immediately point the finger at the presumed guilty before the details have fully come to light. I have been to quite a few parties in college and a lot of situations could be perceived totally different (Rashomon effect?) The point is to report the possible rape and let the investigation take hold, either way the situation isn't good.
     
  7. Jcleppe

    Jcleppe Member

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    Well said.
     
  8. SCcandidate2015

    SCcandidate2015 Member

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    I'm not sure of the advice I would give in this situation. From a purely judicial standpoint, a crime is a crime, and hers, underage drinking, does not simply go away because a crime was committed against her, especially considering it was after the fact. I think it would be wrong for such crime to simply be forgiven.

    With that said, the girl does need to go get a rape kit done. If it's been any amount of time after the event (and I'm getting the feeling it has been), there may be no evidence left. Even if she wasn't raped, fondling is still a criminal offense. Be charitable to the boy and don't go right ahead and assume that he raped her. At the same time, steps do need to be taken, as I said, to test for the possibility.

    Whether she was raped or just fondled, a crime was committed against her, and it needs to be followed through with a prosecution. However, the first step is with her. If she won't support it, nothing will happen. People need to convince her to get a rape kit done, firstly. I think it would be wise, at least for now, not to mention whatever actions might be taken against her for drinking. It sounds a little fishy to me that she was drugged, but remembers exactly who the boy is. She needs to be sure. After she has her thoughts collected in some manner, she does need to make contact with the police.

    No matter what happens, I can guarantee that ROTC will find out about it. If not through her, then through the police when they notify them about the boy. Again, I say, a crime committed against her does not forgive any crime she committed, especially considering that the crime committed against her was committed after she committed her own crime. I think any reasonable and fair person will agree. If I was sitting on that scholarship board, I wouldn't overlook it, by any means.

    She's in a real pickle. It'll probably be hard to prove underage drinking, and I don't even think it'll be charged, as is the state of our PC judicial system, but it could be. At the same time, if she waits much longer, there won't be anything left to prosecute the boy with. Circumstantial evidence is nothing compared to physical evidence. She NEEDS to get to a hospital, and NOW.
     
  9. patentesq

    patentesq Parent

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    You would make a very good lawyer. With your nursing background, you could probably do intellectual property law!
     
  10. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    I agree with everything is said, but also would tell her that come Monday a.m. she reports this to the commander.

    The campus police will inform ROTC anyway, because it is an ROTC cadet regarding both of them, and they will interview all of the cadets that were present at the party, or at least as many that can be tracked down. The longer she waits the more she puts it into a he said/she said thing.

    She does not want an innocent cadet, who is now in fear that their scholarship is in jeopardy for underage drinking to report it first. Understand every cadet that is involved in a police matter, be it speeding ticket or in this case a heinous crime, must report it immediately to the command, here they will be investigated for underage drinking and rape. It is something they agreed upon as a cadet with the unit. Hiding it will only hurt her more because she failed to report it while others came forward for less serious offenses. She only needs 1 cadet to go and report it before the command learns of it...I don't care how big or small a unit is, chances are at least 1 will step forward. For all you know it will be a cadet in a leadership position that was informed after the fact, and now believes it will be an issue for the unit, so they inform the commander before the police can make contact. Yes, it would be heresay, but a good commander is now going to look into it to see what is going on, so again even if the police has yet to contact the unit, they are now going to contact the police for clarification. Which means that although she tried to hide the incident, she failed.

    Commanders are not newly minted officers, they have years of experience and will not make a personal decision regarding these 2 cadets, they will allow the police to handle the situation, and their actions will arise from the results of the police investigation. They are not going to take sides either way and place a life altering decision upon them without full knowledge of the facts.

    Yes, in the end the underage drinking for all of the cadets will be an issue, and the CC may come down hard on all of them,, some may lose their scholarship, some may lose their ability to commission, and some may have nothing occur because there was no positive proof that they imbibed, or saw anything regarding the rape and saw will pay the price for association.

    The reason I say association is that if this party was held by a military fraternity, i.e. AAS, HG, etc., the command can shut down that fraternity, so even if the cadet didn't go to the party, but was a member of the fraternity they will pay a small price.

    As others have stated she needs to go and report this, she needs to get professional help, because rape is also emotional and not just physical, those scars can last much longer than anyone can imagine if not addressed.

    My best thoughts and wishes to her that she may heal quickly.
     
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2011
  11. kpmom2013

    kpmom2013 Member

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    Not an Easy Decision

    The decision whether or not to report this incident is not as clear cut as many might think. Before everyone on this forum goes ballistic, let me say that I have been a lawyer practicing criminal law for over 30 years, half as a prosecutor and half as a defense attorney. I started a rape crisis center back in the 80's. I also teach criminal justice (including a course in victimology) at a local university.

    If this "victim" did not report the incident immediately, it will be very difficult to prove the case. Evidence from a rape kit needs to be collected as soon as possible after an assault in order to have significant evidentiary value. A drug screen for rohypnol or other similar classes of "date rape" drugs needs to be done immediately because these drugs are metabolized very quickly. Obviously, without immediate reporting, the blood alcohol levels of all the parties involved would be impossible to determine. It sounds like all witnesses were under the influence of alcohol. As a result, even if this crime were reported and thoroughly investigated, the chances of having charges actually
    filed by the prosecutor would be very slim, and the chance of a jury actually convicting the "perpetrator" would be even less. Juries are brutal on this kind of case.

    And like it or not, the case would drag on for at least a year and probably two.
    During this time, the alleged victim's reputation would be dragged through the mud along with the alleged perpetrator. Because of the publicity, the ROTC unit would have to take strong action. My prediction would be that everyone at the party would have to be disciplined in a major way and would lose
    scholarships or even be removed from the program entirely. It would take
    years for the program to recover from the scandal. The lives of both the victim and perpetrator would be ruined, sides will be taken, and no one will
    want to date either one.

    It is easy to say, "Of course, she should report." But the reality is that once
    she does, the event will take on a life of its own. This girl is smarter than you might think, especially considering that she is not sure what happened. If the case were actually filed in court, she would be subjected to very intense cross
    examination. I am the mother of two sons and two daughters. If this incident happened to my daughter, I would strongly advise her not to report it. You
    may disagree with me, but please understand that the consequences of reporting (especially delayed reporting) are far reaching.

    The more important lesson to be learned here is prevention. Teach your children about drinking, drugging, and the danger of date rape drugs (which
    are also commonly used for robbery). Turning one's attention away from one's drink for even a few seconds can be disastrous. Friends also have an obligation to look out for each other, and someone at this party should have stopped this situation from happening. Have you actually had a conversation with your child/young adult about the possibility of something like this happening to him/her? It is not only a danger for girls, but for guys as well. An acquaintance of my son is doing 10 years in prison (he is 23) for raping a girl at a college party. It was not a forcible rape, but "rape of an unconscious person" because the girl was drunk and had passed out. He was so drunk, he cannot even remember what happened. Of course, everyone thinks that something like this could never happen to their kid, but trust me, it happens everyday.

    Sorry for the long post, but I do not believe this question is as easy as it seems. Let the bashing begin.
     
  12. aglages

    aglages Parent

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    Or drunk and passed out.
    She is going to accuse a boy based on the above and whatever might have happened? Other than damaging both of their reputations what can she possibly hope to accomplish after telling the police/ROTC that she was drinking, doesn't remember much and isn't sure what happened? If the rape kit shows positive, does that mean she could NOT have given consent? If she can't remember how can she be sure if she said no? I have a daughter also and I'm not trying to blame the victim here, but fortunately for all of us the burden of proof has to be substantially higher than the above....IMHO. Hopefully if she doesn't remember much she shouldn't be too traumatized by this event and will have learned some valuable lessons. Lessons that she should have already learned form her parents, teachers and friends before ever getting to college. Anybody here have a college age daughter that hasn't warned them of drinking excessive amounts of alcohol prepared by someone else and passing out at a party without a friend to take you home?
    I disagree. College students drink....sometimes. We can talk to them, warn them, threaten them, but occasionally almost all will have at least a beer at a party. You want to "report" an entire group of ROTC cadets for underage drinking based on something that a girl doesn't remember much about?

    I don't like what might have happened in the first post but making bad decisions and not remembering something in not a good enough reason IMHO to nuke all the party attendees.
     
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2011
  13. aglages

    aglages Parent

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    X2
     
  14. USMCGrunt

    USMCGrunt Member

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    At the minimum, I believe the young lady should be advised to seek a test for STD's as soon as appropriate (I don't know if you have to wait after exposure for a certain period or not).

    I also think counseling is in order - PTSD, alcohol abuse, etc.
     
  15. Ohio2015Parent

    Ohio2015Parent Member

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    KPMom,

    Thank you for stepping up with the reality of this situation from the legal stand point. As horrifiying as this event has been for the young lady, she would be re-victimized by the system.

    I hope she gets support and help from a campus rape crisis center and medically checked for STDs, but if she was mine, I also would advise her not to report it to the police. Prayers for all involved - this is a tough one.
     
  16. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    I agree with you here, but also the reality is ROTC is filled with college kids. College kids "talk", and to try to hide this from the command will be close to impossible.

    I would assume that at a large unit it would be easier, but if it is a small unit, where when one person sneezes they all say Bless you, it would be difficult.

    I am just saying that to hide it out of fear of issues that may occur, may not be possible, especially if this was a ROTC cadet party.

    I am also taking an assumption it was not a small house party of 10-15 kids, but a large party, where people disappearing would go noticed. Which brings it back to your comment: "the alleged victim's reputation would be dragged through the mud along..."

    Hate to say it, her name is being dragged through mud already. Again, kids talk, and they form their opinions on gossip, not facts. That small party somebody probably saw something, that big party of 30+ and it less likely. This will play into the equation regarding reputation.

    "My prediction would be that everyone at the party would have to be disciplined in a major way and would lose
    scholarships or even be removed from the program entirely. It would take
    years for the program to recover from the scandal. The lives of both the victim and perpetrator would be ruined, sides will be taken, and no one will
    want to date either one."


    I agree. Not only will the cadets be disciplined, believe it or not so will be the AD officers by HQ. They may land up getting passed over for promotion or HQ may PCS them all because to remove the illusion that this is acceptable. Which also ruins their careers.

    I am not saying pity the leadership, or don't report it because it may hurt the program. I am saying that cadets do have an impact on more than just their lives, they can impact so much deeper than they ever thought, which includes the ROTC unit, but might also include the school too.

    We do not know the school, nor am I asking for it, but I want to give an example of how it can impact the school too.

    VT will now graduate the last of the freshman (5 yr engineering program) that were there when the shooting occurred. It is hard for a parent to send your child to school, because safety always is an issue, probably more so for parents of girls. Now imagine, if this happened at VT. A school that also dorms for all 4 yrs the ROTC cadets. This making news would damage all 3 ROTC programs, even though it was just 1 ROTC program. Parents would most likely say, NOPE, any school but that one.

    It also makes everyone not only in the ROTC unit take sides, but because they live together the dorm will too.

    I in no way am saying hide it. I would hate to see her do that. I am saying because of the fall out, she needs to get professional help to deal with the trauma that will occur.

    Even if she doesn't report it, and nobody says squat, she needs the help of therapy. If she doesn't get it, everytime she looks at someone of either sex she will wonder do they think "I slept with this person, and I am easy?" She may take an innocent comment to mean something it never meant, just out of fear.

    Her parents need to believe her, and I am sure they do. They need to say, you are not mentally unstable, but you need to reach out to a counselor and talk this out.

    That is where we should all be at. She is in for a rough road ahead regardless of how it plays with ROTC.

    We all see how no matter what you advise to press forward, she is forever changed. ROTC and loss of scholarship is really nothing. ROTC cadets getting nailed for underage drinking is still nothing when it comes to her health. ROTC image, oh well. The girl is a freshman, the parents have an 18 yo that they believe was date raped. I don't think they give a rats arse about the scholarship, I think they give it about their DD, but the DD cares about ROTC which makes it harder on them regarding how to fix it for her.
    Honestly, I would not advise her at first. I would have gone and picked her up from the college and had her meet with a counselor on Monday....pretty sure profs will give her pass on missing classes due to the circumstances. If she refuese to come home, or I couldn't get to her than I would ask this:
    Do you want to be at that college or do you want to be in ROTC?

    If she said ROTC, I would be honest and say what KPMom and I have stated. Impressing upon her that ROTC at that college will be hell for the next 4 yrs. She will always be that "girl" to some who ruined that "boy's" career.

    I would say transfer out to another school and their ROTC program.

    If she said the University, I would say, get out of ROTC for the exact same reason. She can always try for OCS/OTS upon graduation. Colleges are big, and nobody outside of ROTC would know.

    However, this is where the Mom turns into a woman. I would tell her that by doing so, you just taught him he can keep doing it. Do you want him to do it again. I would say I am your Mom, and will support your decision either way, but you have to make that decision....which is also why I say get her to a counselor now! That is a heavy burden for an 18 yo to carry. Do I turn a blind eye for my own serenity, or do I take the toll so others are safe?

    I don't believe any parent at their age when faced with those 2 choices would be able to make that decision without days of contemplation.

    I don't care if the further time it takes to report it causes issues. I care about her mental stability, and to say to any woman, don't come into the light is far more reaching than a delay in reporting.

    I am not saying that these posts are not caring about her mental health, I am saying that how would you feel if your Mom said not to report it? Would you be able emotionally to not resent their guidance or feel that they were saying "suck it up"?

    I would not be opposed to my DD not reporting it, but I would not advise her that at all, I would allow her with a counselor's help to come to her own decision, knowing we will support whatever it is.
     
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2011
  17. Lizzy

    Lizzy New Member

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    Thank you everyone for your input. I have asked more questions and apparently this was a private party where most of the people attending are with ROTC. A small number stayed and slept at the apartment after the party I guess to sober up before driving home the next day. The girl and boy in this case were the only ones in the room where it happened and that morning he apologized for his behavior. The girl's memory is too foggy to accurately report anything. Hopefully she will get tested for STD's, but she doesn't think it went that far.

    I agree with posters who advocate about not reporting it. The girl doesn't remember enough to be able to make an accurate claim. I know the school has a rape counseling center and hopefully the girl will get some help there. Also, maybe this girl has also learned a hard lesson about the realities of life as a female and the extra precautions females must take in life. Personally, I think this needs to just be taken care of the good old fashioned way and someone needs to kick this boy's ***.

    As for command finding out, I don't think they will. It isn't being reported to authorities and at this time I don't think anyone in ROTC other than the two are aware of this incident. The others who know because the girl has been talking to them, are not in ROTC. Personally I feel that someone should "teach" this boy a lesson.
     
  18. goaliedad

    goaliedad Parent

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    A very difficult thread indeed.

    Given the circumstances and how long since the incident, I would say that kpmom2013 has the best assessment of the situation.

    I will add that at this point in time, it is most important to deal with the following:
    1) STD and pregnancy test ASAP.
    2) Counseling will be necessary with the results of #1 determining a lot of the treatment. Nobody knows exactly what happened and treatment for the victim will be based upon the what the victim is actually experiencing. There will be doubt in her mind as to whether sexual intercourse actually occurred even with a negative outcome to #1, she will need to have the best information possible to be able to work things out in her mind.
    3) Given a negative result of #1 at this point, she probably has little legal recourse (the fondling is a crime, but the lack of victims, intoxication, etc. makes this a difficult case as already mentioned). I'm sure that counseling will address these things with her.
    4) Continuing down the result of a negative result to #1, I wouldn't be surprised that if at some time she will need to confront the perpetrator for her to regain her sense of control of her environment. This will take some time for her to get to that level of strength, but even if she doesn't raise the issue through legal or COC, she owes herself the opportunity to tell this person that he is not in control of her. She also needs to tell him to get some counseling because obviously he has issues if he is groping incapacitated women.
    5) If a positive outcome occurs from #1, things do change. Now we have potential evidence of a more serious crime. kpmom2013 has laid that legal situation out very well. Even if she elects not to press the issue, she still owes that cadet the talking that will allow her to take control of her security. Counseling will help in getting her through that as well.

    I'm wishing for the best here for Lizzy's D's friend and hopefully this event can be turned into a wake-up call to her that she needs to protect herself going forward. The military has many good people, but there are always a few bad apples who get in. Many young ladies in our armed forces find this out the hard way, unfortunately. Lizzy, you are handling this very well. Lizzy's D needs to be there for her friend in these times.
     
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2011
  19. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    Agalges, rape kits also include blood tests for Rohypnol aka roofies when the victim states she was drugged. It will show that it was in her system and she could not have given "consent".

    That is where the crux of this case lies right now. If she didn't go soon enough to report it there will be no proof that she was drugged, hence the he/she said.

    That is the problem with roofies, the girls can't remember anything, and because they were drinking alcohol, they can't be sure if it was too many drinks and now regret or if somebody did something to their drink. They are the least likely to report the crime.

    Not to turn on the friend of the girl, but as KPMOM stated you need to teach your DD's signs.

    Did she not go with female friends? Did none of them see a dramatic turn in her appearance very quickly?

    I have a DD in college, and I am not going to play innocent that my 19 yr old doesn't imbibe, but I also know girls. They are like NUNS and travel in packs to parties. They come to the party together, and usually leave together...unless they expect through the night that one or more wants somebody there from the start. Rarely do girls who are not Roofied walk away with a guy that they were not "hot" for during the early part of the night. Typically, they stay clear, make jokes about him in a negative way while he gets them drinks.

    One of those friends should give her insight to if her behavior changed dramatically after a drink served, unless by that time they all imbibed so heavily that they all were having a good time.

    I know it appears by my posts I am playing both sides of the fence, but I am doing so because the more you push for details the clearer it will become.

    I went to many college parties where alcohol was served (21 was the age for me too), and never did I go by myself, I always went with gf's. We always came to the party together, and always did a "are you coming home with us" count when we left.

    Like the military...no soldier left behind.

    Again, I am not saying she wasn't drugged, I am saying that for her defense if she went to the party with friends one should be able to shed light on if it was alcohol or drugs.

    Worse yet, as a parent I would wonder why the friends left her asleep on a couch as they walked out the door? What kind of friends do this? Would your DD do it? I bet not!

    Let's be honest they would wake her up, and carry her butt home, plus sit next to her stroking her hair as she prayed to the porcelain throne. I remember college, and I remember the 1st semester that I did this for friends.

    That is why, as a parent, I would also be concerned about the crowd she is hanging with if they just left her there.

    OP, I am not saying she was not drugged. Not at all. I am saying as KP has stated there are holes in her story that the defense will attack. I am not an attorney, and that was my 1st thought...what about the friends, why did they leave her?

    I know 2 people who claimed they were Roofied after it could be detected in the bloodstream. Both had the "I don't remember what happened, but I woke up..."

    One was able to prove the case because of 2 things:
    1. The girls she went with said she acted strange after the 2nd drink, and that she was asleep in the bedroom, just let her be...they checked on her and she was, so they left without her.
    Notice a bedroom, fully clothed, not a living room couch in the middle of a party.
    2. She told her friends the next day, and they contacted the police. The police collected all of the cups, and found the residue of Rohypnol in a cup

    One was unable to prove the case because:
    1. The girls were also drunk and could not remember her acting differently, but just having fun.
    2. She told her friends the next day, but they did not contact the police because none of her friends could not remember when she acted different.

    The thought process was she slept with someone that in a sober state would have never contemplated, but in an alcohol state it was possible.

    Personally, as a MOM, I think that if a DD tells the parents when they are away at college, the DD believes she was drugged. A one night stand to her may be embarrassing to your reputation if it was within the unit, but not enough to tell the folks. The folks aren't there and can still believe you are the innocent child they dropped off at school in August.

    You tell the folks when it is not about embarrassment, but fear that you were violated.

    Like I said I am pretty sure my DD has imbibed at college, but I don't know when it happened. She probably was a drunk that her friends carried her back to the dorm and held her hair back over the toilet.

    This child has a fear. A fear big enough to tell her parents.
     
  20. educateme

    educateme Member

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    I am a bit disturbed by the tone of the discussion here. Some folks are saying, if she was drunk how does she know whether she consented or not. Excuse me, my understanding is, if you are incapacitated, you are not capable of consenting. Ergo, it's a rape if somebody had sex with you when you were to hammered to give a consent. My MS 1 son told me that the mandatory "college life" lecture he had to attend simply said, "if somebody is drunk, having sex with her will be automatically considered a sexual assault by the university administration and be a ground for expulsion"

    I am also distressed by heavy emphasis by some posters on the "crime" of under age drinking on her part and that she should be punished for that "crime" regardless of her status as a victim. Yes, this would be absolutely correct if she was involved in a burglary or what not. But we are talking about a behavior that near 100% of college kids are involved. And this includes majority of cadets also. Cadre knows about it. Many of them practice the "look the other way" policy. One PMS I met last year even said "we all know they drink. we just hope that they do it "responsibly" and "inconspicuously". It's a height of hypocracy to keep talking about the "crime" of underage drinking on the part of the alleged victim. Granted, once it became "official" that she was drinking, then the punishment must be meted out to ALL cadets in that party and ALL cadets suspected of ever having been drinking in the past, and ALL future cadets that may ever drink on campus. Unless they are willing to do that, singling her "crime" of underage drinking out over and over again as part of this discussion is disingenuous.

    Third, the "recommendation" for her keep quite given the price she has to pay, and the price that the ENTIRE battalion may have to pay as a result of her reporting is also quite unsettling to me. Yes, I understand the dilemma. I am also aware that the poster who was leaning this way is a parent of a daughter too, and s/he is not saying this lightly. However, aren't we putting priorities backward here? The priority is that the perpetrator, if he was an indeed a perpetrator, should NEVER be allowed to be an officer. What other future victims may he create in his path as an officer in an institution where hierarchy rules absolute unlike civilian institutions? The priority should be to encourage reporting and finding a way to protecting the victim and not making a pay for the consequence of reporting. If it takes bending a rule a little bit so that institutionally Army is encouraging reporting of such incidents without making life a living hell for the victim who decides to report (as in not "prosecuting" her for the "crime" of underage drinking), so be it.

    As much as I sympathize with the view that the price of reporting is too high for the victim AND the institution where she belongs to hence it's better not to report, I am disturbed by the fact that this is how crimes like this get perpetuated and institutionalized. It was not long ago that rape victims were too afraid to come out due to the damage to her reputation, etc, and rapist go freely to the next victim and the next..... Unless we make it relatively safe for the victim to report the crime, the institution is indirectly encouraging or at least tolerating, the perpetrator to continue their behavior.

    In all this, I am not saying that the boy actually committed the crime. That needs to be investigated, but unless it is reported, no investigation will be done. If he indeed committed this act, now we have a potential of a sex abuser as an officer, a fine scenario indeed!
     
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