Friday, August 21, 2009

Rape reported at Arena Park; victim won't press charges

There are some serious problems with this story:

1. The woman who alleges the attack decided to meet the accused at 5 a.m. in a park after having been previously assaulted by the same person.

2. She told police that she had gone to the hospital after the 1st alleged assault, but police could find no record of that actually happening.

3. She has declined to move forward with charges.

Sadly, there is no mention if the police will continue to pursue this, or if they will continue to go after the young man accused.

I also have a problem with the title of the story. Just because a rape is reported, whether it happened or not, the accuser is a 'victim'. This automatically presumes that the accused is guilty, and responsible journalism demands that news outlets be more responsible with their dissemination of information, and be objective.

'Victim' won't press charges in reported rape.

Cape Girardeau police are investigating a report of a rape early Monday at Arena Park in Cape Girardeau.

According to Cpl. Adam Glueck, spokesman for the police department, the victim, a 20-year-old woman, called police around 5 a.m. Monday after the incident occurred, but later said she did not want the incident pursued.

The 18-year-old suspect had called her and told her to meet him at the park, the victim said.

"They knew each other," Glueck said.

When they met at the park, the suspect left to go into the restroom, Glueck said.

A couple of minutes later, he pulled the woman into the building with him, where he proceeded to rape her, the victim reported to police.

The victim said that after the rape, she ran to a nearby business and called the police.
She suffered minor scrapes on her hand, Glueck said, but it wasn't clear whether or not those occurred as a result of the sexual assault.

She declined to be taken to an area hospital for treatment, and stated that she wanted the matter dropped, Glueck said.

When police attempted to conduct follow-up interviews with the victim, she was not cooperative and said she did not want charges pursued against the suspect, Glueck said.

The victim had told police that she'd been assaulted earlier on Sunday by the suspect, and had gone to an area hospital for treatment, Glueck said.

Police couldn't find any record of the hospital visit, Glueck said.