Rape accused to be given anonymity.

Sarah - posted on 05/21/2010 ( 19 moms have responded )

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http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/l...

The coalition Government yesterday pledged to extend the current ban on identifying victims in rape cases to defendants as well.

It would mean only those convicted of rape would ever be named but the controversial move last night split opinion.

Rape support groups said it was an "insult" that would discourage victims from reporting attacks but those have been falsely accused welcomed the decision as long overdue.
The pledge was included in the Government's detailed coalition agreement which also revealed plans for a complete review of sentencing policy, raising the prospect of an end to short term prison sentences.
It also pledged to give anonymity to teachers facing accusations of assault or other offences by their own pupils.
It comes amid concerns careers are ruined by staff who are victims of malicious and false allegation from their students.
Officials last night refused to give further details on how the rape defendant ban would work but victims are currently afforded protection for life from the moment they report a rape.
There has been growing pressure to change the law for defendants amid claims false allegations ruin the lives of innocent people.

What are your thoughts? Should men have anonymity until they are actually proven to be guilty? Or is this move going to make women less likely to come forward when they've been raped?

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Sunny - posted on 05/25/2010

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I know where your coming from Kati. I have been raped 3 times twice by the same person and they both got off on lack of evidence. The man that raped me went on to rape another 5 young girls who all knew him and me but knew nothing of his attack on me. I feel if they had heard about it in some way it may have triggered a sense about him that they already had and they might not have been in a position to be alone with him. After going through the process and knowing full well that i was not lying it breaks my heart to think of how many women have been through what i have at the hands of the same men and yet there is nothing i can do to warn them.

I also never want to see an innocent man in prison (my uncle was released from prison 3 years ago when he was found innocent of a murder the he spent 15 years in prison for)

Im torn on this really.

Lucy - posted on 05/21/2010

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Once a man is proven guilty in court, splash his face all over the papers, I say, but until then he should have anonymity.

Even if only one in a million rape accusations are false, that one man should be protected by the law. Mud sticks, and if a man in a position of responsibility such as a teacher, social worker, police officer etc, is accused and cleared his career will still be in tatters if his identity has been made public.

This move does not give the message that women who make rape allegations are all liars. It gives the message that a defendant is innocent until proven guilty, and that is the cornerstone of a democratic justice system.

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Rosie - posted on 05/25/2010

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i'm really big into crime shows christa, and yeah it really creeeps me out how many times they have stories of people that have been accused of rape multiple times and then they end up murdering their girlfriend, or girlfriends daughter, or something. it's just really icky and creeps me out. i should really stop watching those shows, lol!

Christa - posted on 05/25/2010

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Kati I do see what you are saying. Logic would say why would an innocent man KEEP getting accused? But why can't they convict him? With that many witnesses you'd think they'd be able to find something. What's that saying, "better 10 guilty men go free then one innocent man in prison" or something. What's worse ruining innocent men's lives or letting one go free? I don't really know the best answer.

Charlie - posted on 05/25/2010

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I agree with it , its life ruining for those who are falsely accused and i really dont see how it will stop rape victims from coming forward .

Rosie - posted on 05/25/2010

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i do agree, but it does creep me out to think i could be dating a person who has been accused of rape numerous times. i personally would like that information, but yes, i do agree that innocent until proven guilty is more important.

Esther - posted on 05/25/2010

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In Holland nobody accused of a crime is ever identified until convicted. No name, no pictures (at least not without blocking out the eyes to make them less recognizable). I think that's how it should be really. Innocent until proven guilty.

Rosie - posted on 05/25/2010

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jodi i was talking about cases i've heard about where a man keeps on being accused of rape and keeps on getting off. then come to find out he really has done these things and finally made a mistake that got him caught.

Sharon - posted on 05/21/2010

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I read a book once where the rapist was represented by 5 or 7 men and the victim was represented by a like number of women.



In the book, the rapist was innocent so I'm not sure how that would have played out had he been guilty. But I imagine, the reps would have been led away, leaving the guilty to be read his verdict.



I like this idea. If the accused rapist is innocent, then his reputation stays intact.



Actually, I kind of like the idea of the name & face staying out of the jury too. This way fame or infamy can't play in the decision at all.

Jodi - posted on 05/21/2010

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Kati, as far as I am aware, if a person who was accused by several women, in all likelihood would be held in custody until trial......

Becky - posted on 05/21/2010

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I'm torn on this one. I agree that false allegations ruin lives and reputations. And I'm not really sure how it would prevent women from coming forward to report rape. But the problem I see with it is that a trial and conviction can take months, or even years, and the accused are not always held in prison until the trial. So what happens when say, it's a student on a university campus who is raping other students, he's accused, released on bail pending trial, and remains anonymous? That puts every other woman on that campus at risk for rape. That is the problem I have with it.

Rosie - posted on 05/21/2010

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i agree with everyone else here, but i am a little worried about some instances. what if there is a really big scuzzbag who keeps on raping women and keeps on getting off scott free. shouldn't people who want to date him, or something be allowed to know that this person has been accused multiple times of a violent crime? i think that would change my mind if i knew that about someone.

LaCi - posted on 05/21/2010

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they should absolutely have anonymity until proven guilty. The charge could ruin their life even if they are never convicted. I had a kid in juvie for rape who was falsely accused, tragic. fortunately he was a minor so it was anonymous. Victims DO misidentify attackers, Some women falsely accuse men for petty reasons. Once convicted then absolutely, release their names. But innocent until proven guilty can only be maintained with anonymity. I also think this should extend to more than just rape, once your name is released to the press for any serious offense if anyone happens to google you for the rest of your life they'll see the charge, regardless of what the verdict is.

*Lisa* - posted on 05/21/2010

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They absolutely should have anonymity until proven guilty. So many lives are ruined by false accusations. I don't see how it will make a difference to the victim at all. In fact, it may dissuade people from falsely accusing and wasting the courts time as they will get no benefit from it.

Erin - posted on 05/21/2010

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I have no problem with an accused person remaining anonymous until they are proven guilty. I also fail to see how this would discourage victims from reporting a crime. The report will still be taken seriously. All avenues of investigation will still be explored to get justice for the victim and due punishment for the perpetrator. Unless it was indeed a false allegation intended to smear the credibility and reputation of the accused, why would it matter?

Shelley - posted on 05/21/2010

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Innocent untill proven guilty.
Although in reguards to the teachers something should be put into place to protect minors eg other students ect

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I don't get how this will put women off from coming forward. Treatment of the victim and the attacker won't be any different. The newspapers just won't be allowed to plaster it over the place. Public opinion of the alleged rapist (when say it's a celebrity) can potentially sway the verdict.

The sluts who lie about rape, are to blame for the women who are scared to come forward incase someone doesn't believe them. Hopefully this will stop those "innocent" victims who sell their stories to the tabloids instead of talking to the police. It becomes a big waste of time for the police if they get dragged into some big public PR exercise on how they are handling a certain cases. They should be finding proof of rape not holding press conferences!

Sarah - posted on 05/21/2010

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That's how i feel about it too Jodi.
The article said that Women Against Rape do not support this as :
"If men accused of rape got special rights to anonymity, it would reinforce the misconception that lots of women who report rape are lying.
"False rape allegations are extremely rare, but receive disproportionate publicity.

They think that will prevent women from coming forward.
I think the same as you though, you're supposed to be innocent until proven guilty.

Jodi - posted on 05/21/2010

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Well, I am a big believer in innocent until proven guilty. There are many instances of when people are falsely accused of a crime, and it can ruin their lives, even if they are found not guilty. It also ruins the lives of those around them and can make it difficult for them to get a fair trial.

So, yes, they should have anonymity until it is proven. There are women who make false allegations too (and unfortunately this is to the detriment of those who have genuine cases). I fail to see how an accused rapist remaining anonymous until proven guilty will make women less likely to come forward....

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