Shocking Overturn of Rape Conviction

making waves

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The conviction of a (then) 21 year-old man for raping a 15 year-old girl has been overturned. The reason given is that his lawyer was refused the right to question this girl as to why she was taking the contraceptive pill.

This is utterly disgusting - taking contraception does not mean consent -

Furthermore - the girl was 15 - it was statutory rape - the fact that she was on the pill is irrelevant.

Women of all ages take the pill for a variety of reasons, not just to prevent conception. In this particular case the original trial judge stated that she was taking the pill for medical reasons.

This should have no role in any rape trial - but what it does do is demonstrate the fact that the law is patriarchal and misogynist when it comes to the treatment of women (particularly in cases of rape and sexual assault).

https://www.irishtimes.com/news/crime-and-law/courts/rape-conviction-quashed-over-ruling-on-asking-girl-15-about-taking-pill-1.3539045?mode=amp
 


amist4

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The conviction of a (then) 21 year-old man for raping a 15 year-old girl has been overturned. The reason given is that his lawyer was refused the right to question this girl as to why she was taking the contraceptive pill.

This is utterly disgusting - taking contraception does not mean consent -

Furthermore - the girl was 15 - it was statutory rape - the fact that she was on the pill is irrelevant.

Women of all ages take the pill for a variety of reasons, not just to prevent conception. In this particular case the original trial judge stated that she was taking the pill for medical reasons.

This should have no role in any rape trial - but what it does do is demonstrate the fact that the law is patriarchal and misogynist when it comes to the treatment of women (particularly in cases of rape and sexual assault).

https://www.irishtimes.com/news/crime-and-law/courts/rape-conviction-quashed-over-ruling-on-asking-girl-15-about-taking-pill-1.3539045?mode=amp
Your link:

The court did, however, have a concern in relation to the ruling preventing any questions being raised as to the reasons why the complainant was on the contraceptive pill or remained on it despite some adverse medical reaction to the medication.

There was, at least, a possibility that the jury might be persuaded that a primary or secondary motivation for taking the pill, and remaining on it, was to facilitate sexual intercourse and that such sexual activity as occurred in the course of her confrontation with the man “was not the first occasion on which she had engaged in sexual intercourse”.



It was “an important credibility issue,” Mr Justice Mahon said.
 

Sync

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Nah. There’s a reasonableness factor involved here. I’m not fan of going excessively into an alleged victim’s past but this is going into her present.

Furthermore - the girl was 15 - it was statutory rape - the fact that she was on the pill is irrelevant.
You seem to fundamentally misunderstanding the story. The accused admitted your above claim. The conviction wasn’t for statutory rape, it was for rape. I’m guessing you’re not going to revise your opinion based on that fundamental misunderstanding. Not your bag.

The Court of Appeal quashed his conviction on Thursday over the ruling which prevented the defence asking questions about the complainant being on the pill, and why she remained on it despite some adverse medical reactions.

It was the prosecution’s case, based on statements provided by the complainant, that, although she had boyfriends, she had not previously been sexually active and was a virgin prior to her encounter with the man.

The defence also sought to introduce evidence that would assist in establishing that the complainant was taking the pill not just for medical reasons but at least partly for contraceptive purposes in contemplation of such activity.
Yeah the defence has to be able to ask that question. It’s perfectly valid and goes to the witness’s credibility if nothing else.
 

Buchaill Dana

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The article says the conviction was for rape, not statutory rape. But either way, if she decided to gang bang the local football team the night before it still does not negate the fact a crime took place. So what relevance was the pill, other than an avenue to attack her charachter?
 

Sync

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The article says the conviction was for rape, not statutory rape. But either way, if she decided to gang bang the local football team the night before it still does not negate the fact a crime took place. So what relevance was the pill, other than an avenue to attack her charachter?
Because she and the prosecution claim she’d never had sexual activity and there’s evidence supporting a claim that she was on the pill despite adverse effects. Perfectly reasonable to ask about why that is. There may be incredibly valid reasons for it. The answer may just be “I wanted to be safe in case I decided to”, But the defence clearly has the right to ask that question and for the answer to be considered.
 

bonkers

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Nah. There’s a reasonableness factor involved here. I’m not fan of going excessively into an alleged victim’s past but this is going into her present.



You seem to fundamentally misunderstanding the story. The accused admitted your above claim. The conviction wasn’t for statutory rape, it was for rape. I’m guessing you’re not going to revise your opinion based on that fundamental misunderstanding. Not your bag.



Yeah the defence has to be able to ask that question. It’s perfectly valid and goes to the witness’s credibility if nothing else.
That’s nonsense. What the girl has done in the past has nothing to do with it.
 

Buchaill Dana

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Because she and the prosecution claim she’d never had sexual activity and there’s evidence supporting a claim that she was on the pill despite adverse effects. Perfectly reasonable to ask about why that is. There may be incredibly valid reasons for it. But the defence clearly has the right to ask that question.
That's my point. A rape victims sexual history is supposed to be off limits. Even if she was promiscuous, how does that impact on whether she was raped or not? We are into miniskirt territory here and it appears to be very regressive.
 

amist4

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The article says the conviction was for rape, not statutory rape. But either way, if she decided to gang bang the local football team the night before it still does not negate the fact a crime took place. So what relevance was the pill, other than an avenue to attack her charachter?
Whats the difference between a willing participant and and an unwilling one?

Christ.
 

Sync

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That's my point. A rape victims sexual history is supposed to be off limits. Even if she was promiscuous, how does that impact on whether she was raped or not? We are into miniskirt territory here and it appears to be very regressive.
Nope. I agree history is irrelevant. Unless the alleged victim and the prosecution make it relevant. They’re the ones that claimed she wasn’t active. Being on the pill (particularly if it caused adverse reaction) calls that claim into question. It’s clearly evidence that could lead one to reasonably believe she was active. Which impacts on her credibility. If the prosecution hadn’t said that I fully agree it’s not relevant.

To use your miniskirt example: agree, it’s totally irrelevant unless the alleged victim volunteers “I never wear mini skirts”. If the defence has evidence they wore mini skirts, they’ve got to be allowed demonstrate that.

People have to tell the truth. If they don’t tell the truth: that impacts your credibility.
 

Sync

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Exactly. Any lawyers out there able to confirm or deny if sexual history can be introduced by the defence?
It was introduced by the prosecution. The defence wanted to rebut it.
 

Buchaill Dana

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Nope. I agree history is irrelevant. Unless the alleged victim and the prosecution make it relevant. They’re the ones that claimed she wasn’t active. Being on the pill (particularly if it caused adverse reaction) calls that claim into question. It’s clearly evidence that could lead one to reasonably believe she was active. Which impacts on her credibility. If the prosecution hadn’t said that I fully agree it’s not relevant.

To use your miniskirt example: agree, it’s totally irrelevant unless the alleged victim says “I never wear mini skirts”.
I see whete you are going, but it doesn't matter how sexually active or not she is. Introducing the pill to catch her in a potential lie is slut shaming and heavy tactic to pull on a child.

It's not on the face of it a tactic the courts should indulge.
 


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