Trigger warning for rape and rape culture.
Holy crap. A woman has been jailed for falsely retracting rape charges – the story seems complicated, but the outcome should not. It appears that she may have been pressured into retracting them by her husband (rapist?) and his sister.
Prosecutor Simon Parry is quoted as remarking that ‘alarm bells started ringing for prosecutors when the woman admitted she and her husband had consensual sex soon after the alleged rapes.’ Yeah but – no. The victim having ‘consensual’ (and if the rape allegations are true, I sincerely doubt the quality of consent there) sex with someone who has raped them is not a reason for alarm bells to go off. There are many reasons consent may have been given, and frankly other episodes are nothing to do with the case.
She should not have been jailed. Rape is a highly traumatic experience that no-one should have to go through. There is so much wrong with the judicial system’s treatment of rape, and so little empathy in the system’s approach to it. This verdict will only hurt. There is a clear lack understanding and compassion in the verdict, and it will, as the director of the End Violence Against Women Coalition Holly Dustin says, send out ‘a chilling message that parts of the criminal justice system are still in the dark ages in relation to sexual violence and do not understand the pressure women come under from perpetrators during the legal process. The potential threat of prosecution makes it less likely that women will report.’