Take that Roy Black…a voice for victims talks back regarding the “false allegations” hysteria

Perps 1 Victims 0

Until Susan Brownmiller wrote a rebuttal to Roy Black’s power-to-the-perps article (see post below for Black’s article) that is.

Accused rapists don’t need more protections

Roy Black says with bitterness that it’s easier today than it’s ever been to get a conviction. He should have said that it is hypothetically easier to get a conviction. Rape is still the most under-reported crime in the nation, and convictions for rape have not increased dramatically since rape shield laws were put into effect during the 1970s to level the courtroom playing field by limiting the scope of inquiry into a victim’s past sexual history. I am all for rape shield laws because there are too many people out there who still want a rape victim to be pure in the Santa Maria Goretti tradition. Eleven-year-old Maria Goretti (1890-1902) was canonized as a saint for gladly dying in her struggle to defend her virginity in a sexual assault. Santa Maria does not match the profile of a typical rape victim.

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Mother who was falsely accused of child sex abuse gets her name cleared

Her son was pushed into falsely accusing her of child sexual abuse by the father.

Mother’s conviction vacated after son recants testimony of sex abuse

More than seven years after a son’s accusations of sex abuse led to his mother’s
conviction as a sex offender, a Queens judge has vacated the ruling based on the
son’s recantation and the admission that he fabricated his testimony to avoid
scrutiny of his own problems and strengthen his relationship with his father.

Round up of family court cases, new policies

(The following articles come from several sources, including the folks behind sites like Parenting News Network, Dastardly Dads, Justice Posterous…)

Does access trump safety?

Boise man, child who died in
murder-suicide Thursday identified

http://www.idahostatesman.com/2011/05/20/1656600/boise-man-child-who-died-in-murder.html

Court records indicate Davis and Natasha’s mother were not
married. There was a legal battle over the girl’s custody which was resolved in
2009, according to Ada County court records.

Initially,
Davis said the girl’s mother refused to let him have access to Natasha
following her birth but a visitation schedule was worked out once lawyers were
hired, the documents say.

Davis sued for joint custody and was granted in April 2009,
according to the records, but a 50/50 split was not to occur until 2013. Until
then, Davis had custody certain days of the week.

Read more: http://www.idahostatesman.com/2011/05/20/1656600/boise-man-child-who-died-in-murder.html#ixzz1N8EqLkd7

Custody battle erupts in gunfire

http://citizensvoice.com/news/custody-battle-erupts-in-gunfire-1.1150096#axzz1N2q4PoFu

In a flurry of gunfire, police said Cooper fatally shot a mother of three and wounded two men before
turning the gun on himself
. His ex-girlfriend and target, Shaundra Langille, 28, survived the shooting rampage by hiding in a closet with the couple’s 9-month-old  daughter and another child, authorities said.

Police  arrived at the chaotic murder-suicide scene around 3:20 p.m. to find Shana Bagley’s body outside the
front door of Apartment 413 in the Hanover Village Apartments, dead on her 25th  birthday.

Read
more: http://citizensvoice.com/news/custody-battle-erupts-in-gunfire-1.1150096#ixzz1N89HDFo4

Family denies custody battle caused deaths

http://news.ninemsn.com.au/national/8251950/grieving-family-denies-custody-dispute

“Both  parents had access to the children and there was no custody battle,” the family said in a statement.

I have an article posted on the  blog that also states access is not a factor when fathers kill (meaning they
don’t kill because they don’t have access, which is what many fathers rights  groups claim) – rather, vengeance often plays a role (and ironically, women are  stereotyped – esp. in family court –as being vengeful).

Records: Barbone admitted to hitting baby; autopsy results in

Neighbors  devastated by murder charge

http://www.localnews8.com/news/27931821/detail.html

The records said that Barbone tried  to quiet his son down when he started crying at 1:30 a.m. Monday. Barbone
changed his diaper and tried to get the baby to fall asleep with him on a  couch. Barbone allegedly admitted to the reporting officer that when the boy would  not quiet down, he struck the baby on  the back of the head with his fist and then elbowed him in the head, according to the records.

When Barbone realized the child was  unresponsive he took him to Portneuf Medical Center from the home he was
staying at on La Montagna Strada, which is less than a mile away from the  hospital. This happened around 7 a.m., according to the records.

Doctors worked to save the infant  for 30 minutes before declaring him dead. They said the infant was most likely
dead before he arrived at the hospital, according to the records.

Barbone had been living with his girlfriend and her two  other children in Sunny Creek Courts on the south part of town, the manager of  the trailer court said. Barbone had moved out after being charged with domestic
battery, but that the family was back together again late last week, and  neighbors saw Barbone and his girlfriend smiling together, the manager said.  Barbone had visitation custody with  the infant, according to court records.

Father charged in slaying of teen

http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/father-charged-in-slaying-of-teen/2011/05/21/AFzRYj8G_story.html?wprss=rss_local

I’ve only read the Washington Post article regarding this case – which has “father” in the headlines, but I’ve  seen other that said “man.”  It also says he killed “teen” not daughter. Lastly, the WaPo quotes  that the father had a “sexual relationship” with the the teen – huh?!  Isn’t this molestation?!

It says the girl lived with Mom but visited Dad.

Valrico father arrested after child’s thigh bone is
fractured

http://www.tampabay.com/news/publicsafety/crime/valrico-father-arrested-after-childs-thigh-bone-is-fractured/1170540

VALRICO — A 24-year-old man was accused of aggravated child abuse Thursday  after deputies say he pulled his 3-year-old boy to the ground and fractured the child’s thigh bone.

This is what the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office says happened:

Matthew Clark was changing his 1-year-old’s diaper at his apartment on N Valrico Road when his 3-year-old came up to him, which aggravated Clark. He grabbed the  3-year-old by the shoulder and pulled the child to the ground.

The child hit the ground with his left knee and fell on his side. Clark heard a  pop. The child cried.

But deputies say the father didn’t seek medical treatment or call 911. About  half an hour later, he dropped both
children off with their mother
. She took them to the hospital. Clark, who lists his occupation as a shift leader at Tijuana Flats, was being held in jail without bail.

Tenn.
Custody bill that seeks to maximize parents’ involvement headed to governor

http://www.greenfieldreporter.com/view/story/f2918ebe4e0b4c318432988b26a87bd0/TN-XGR–Child-Custody/

NASHVILLE,  Tenn. — A proposal that would require  judges to consider how to maximize a parent’s involvement in a child’s life  when making custody decisions is headed to the governor for his
consideration.

The measure sponsored by Democratic Sen. Andy Berke of Chattanooga was approved  19-9 by the Senate on Saturday. The House version passed 92-0 last month. Although  not the only factor to be considered, legal experts say the call for “maximum participation possible” could lead some judges to increase visitation time or divide custody 50-50 more often.

Democratic  Sen. Beverly Marrero of Memphis says judges should be given “tools to do what they think is in the best interest of the children of Tennessee.” Gov. Bill Haslam is expected to review the proposal once it reaches his desk.

Australia  is having their problems with Fathers rights, too:

Children, the biggest losers in shared care?

http://www-public.jcu.edu.au/jcnn/makingnews/JCU_079915

“In the Family Court, the Howard Government brought in a law colloquially known as the ‘shared care’ law,”
Overington said. “It essentially requires judges of the Family Court to  consider giving parents a 50-50 or a shared care split of the children after divorce.”

The law represented a radical  change in policy. Judges are now being asked to consider the child’s best interests will be served by an equal relationship with both parents, almost  regardless of the circumstances Overington said.

“They are now legally bound to do  so and, ironically, they are splitting custody between the parents who are least able to share.

“Something like nine in 10 couples reach an agreement themselves before they even reach the Family Court. The cases that do end up in court are the ones where the  couples are essentially at war over even the smallest details of their  children’s lives. Yet they are the ones who are forced to cooperate. That’s why we’ve ended up with the kind of problems we’ve seen.”

Overington outlines an example  where a man and woman have a one-night stand and the woman falls pregnant, reminiscent of a case in New South Wales earlier this year. “The father was not, according to the mother’s testimony, that interested in having a relationship with the child, but very desperately did not want to pay any maintenance,” Overington  said.

“According to the law, the more time you have custody of the child the less you have to pay in maintenance, so the father wanted to have the child 50 per cent of the time.

“So you have a child under the age of one – still on the breast – being shuffled back  and forwards between houses at two-hour intervals so both parents can have  their equal time.

“To my mind, that is not in the best interests of the child. It may be in the best interests of the father, but it’s certainly not in the best interests of the infant.”

New bill on child abuse aims to halt false claims

http://www.mailtribune.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20110519/NEWS/105190332

The bill is designed to discourage adults from using malicious allegations of abuse in bitter divorce or child custody cases, supporters say.

And-

Mish said holding people accountable for false reports is “a good thing.” But the bill could  have the unintended consequence of  keeping children trapped in abusive situations because adults are fearful of making a report that, while true, might not be able to be proven, she said.

If they were familiar with current research, they’d know that the vast majority of abuse claims are made in good faith. This punishment can hurt protective parents and children more than it can help innocent men. (And it disregards
the false accusations of being an unfit or unstable mother).

Stepmother of boy accused of killing his neo-Nazi father charged with child endangerment

http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/lanow/2011/05/neo-nazi-father-killed.html

Two of Hall’s children were from a previous marriage, including his  10-year-old son. According to court records, the boy had a history of  aggression and violence after his parents went through a bitter divorce, with both Hall and his ex-wife, Leticia Neal of Spokane, Wash., accusing each other of abusing and neglecting the
children.

Hall was granted full custody of the children. Last year, Neal filed for custody of the 10-year-old
boy and his 9-year-old sister, saying she was concerned about the children’s well-being because of the father’s affiliation with the neo-Nazi group. Hall opposed the motion, saying Neal had had no contact with the children for six years.

Disabled mom fights for custody of son

http://www.stltoday.com/lifestyles/relationships-and-special-occasions/parenting/aisha-sultan/article_1873270b-be68-5672-b379-8887a18e02b3.html

And now, with their child in kindergarten, she’s trapped in a yearlong custody battle with her ex-boyfriend, the baby’s father. Currently, the parents share custody, but her ex is seeking full custody. Flynn says her disability is at the heart of the issue.

“Her ability to parent because of her disability will be on trial,” her attorney Jack Cavanagh said. A resulting side effect of the  stroke has been aphasia, a language disorder that makes her struggle to find the words she wants to communicate. Her speech comes in short, halting bursts, and she lost her ability to read.

Oregon House bill will deter reporting child abuse

This bill will deter parents from making claims of child abuse for fear of being penalized. If legislators would only read current reseach or visit Web sites like the American Bar Association, The Leadership Council on Child Abuse & Interpersonal Violence, etc. rather than rely on sterotypes, they would find out that most mothers make allegations of abuse in good faith. Sometimes the allegation may be believed by the mother but untrue. It’s a very small fraction of cases that are made for malicious reasons.

Research also finds men make more false allegations (of being unfit or of neglect) than women, but apparently the legislators aren’t concerned about mothers.

New bill on child abuse aims to halt false claims

Another false allegation story (Washington Post writer Tom Jackman)

Another false allegation story…so would the public perception of false allegations be comparable to stats on false allegations, or would the public think false allegations were higher or lower than they really are? You already know my answer if you read my blog.

The media continues to highlight false allegations and ignore the huge amount of abuse cases that go unreported. Not only that, when they do discuss false allegations they don’t put them into context. Reporting on these cases tend to tilt the “he said she said” female credibility-questioning scale. It shores up the ‘nice guys’ cred and pounds home the message that accusations –any–can ruin a man’s reputation and career (hence situations like the one regarding the reporting on the gang rape of an 11-year-old girl in the NY Times where they discussed the community’s concern for the rapists’ futures). It also makes people question the very right of women to press charges.

Some of the MRAs that talk of false allegations, for instance, would have you believe that (1) men never make false allegations – and indeed the media don’t report on these, or they call them ‘set ups’ or other such terms indicating skill rather than vengeance and (2) men should be immune from abuse charges (for example, they say they’ve been a victim of a false allegation – well, the criminal justice system did it’s job, didn’t it? – charges were pressed and they were cleared – nobody’s immune from being charged with a crime  -whether they committed or not is up to the justice system to decide). And, I’d add they believe (3) women never get falsely accused. But back to the idea that women don’t have a right to report charges – because, you know, they’d ruin a man’s career (how long have we been hearing this?!) — this is exactly why many women don’t report. [Examples – Women in domestic violence cases, many of whom are dependent on the husband’s income, don’t report. Women raped by a friend in college – don’t report because they don’t want to ruin the guy’s future.] And society often feels the same – it’s why I say there’s more sympathy for the accused than the abused.

Yes, I have sympathy for this man – it sounds like he was falsely accused for a malicous purpose if this story is true. But – come on guys — a fair media would balance these reports out not tip the scales in the accused’s favor all the time.    

Fairfax teacher Sean Lanigan still suffering from false molestation allegations

Rape culture

I went to a conference once where the speaker had Googled ‘sexual assault’ and within a 24 hour time frame, she produced story after story of a society riddled with rape – of girls raped by men, of college students assaulted on campus, of women jogging in the park. It was startling.

Now consider how under-reported rape is. The media often focuses more on false allegations of rape than the problem of not reporting it, so most people tend to have more sympathy for the accused than the abused.

If the media reported on it, and society understood it better, perhaps we as a society could do more to prevent it. Reporting on false allegations – that just fuels the belief that people won’t believe you if you’re raped. Victim blaming will also prevent you from reporting. The recent NY Times article did just that – and did little to educate readers on the reality of rape. Here are a few more posts on the topic:

The careless language of sexual violence    

Here are some posts on campus assaults:

Students protest Dickinson College ignoring protection from sexual assault (pictures of the protest)

Dickinson college students want more information on sexual assaults on campus

Warning: the link below is highly offensive. Please hit the “report abuse” button on the upper left hand side:

Man debates: rape: deaf vs. blind

Hands down, deaf people are the better of the two to rape. If you’re raping a girl, what does she do? She cries and screams for help. Well, if she’s deaf she’ll be whining, but she won’t be calling out for someone to save her ass. She’ll squawk something that sounds like a seal with his slippery little cock slammed in a door. This will be annoying, of course, but no one will care. People will probably just think that some retard sprained her ankle. Thus, nobody will come to help her, and the neighbors will be pissed off at all the ruckus. Plus, I don’t have to stuff a sock in her mouth, which is one less thing I have to bring along in my rape tool kit, which includes the following:*.

*That’s why a deaf person is the preferred choice by many a rapist. You can sneak up behind them and they won’t hear you.

There are many more blogs and web sites with similarly offensive text (and pics). Angry Harry comes to mind. He refutes rape stats and claims most are false allegations.

Rape is a problem all over the world. I’ve posted links to articles that state 1 in 3 South African men admit to rape. I heard a woman talk about violence against women in Guatemala – she said gang members have to rape and kill girls for their initiation. She said since these men aren’t skilled in killing, they hack the body. All I could think was: they treat bulls better in Spain. And here’s a recent article about the rapes in Congo (many are classified as “atrocity rapes”):

UN squad starts work in mass rape zones 

But given the scale of conflict-zone sex assaults, Zahinda warns that his four-person unit –with two positions yet to be filled–can’t possibly respond to every incident of mass rape.

“If we were going to respond to individual cases we would be responding every second,” he told Women’s eNews in a recent phone interview. “People are raped every day in eastern Congo.”

Of course they can’t respond to every mass rape — women’s (and men’s) sexual assault are not prioritized. They go on the back burner, like many of the other issues we have.  I recently posted an article where a guy from US AID said women represented a “special interest group” and considered our human rights “pet projects.”

Women: How long are we going to take this?

Custody catastrophes

Lesbian moms reluctant to report abuse by partner fearing child’s custody loss

and, on the subject of custody…

Child custody expert tied to lewd Web photos 

A prominent Beverly Hills psychiatrist who has helped decide hundreds of child-custody disputes was thrown off one recent case and has been challenged in at least two others after posting lewd photos of himself on Facebook and allegedly promoting illegal drug use, unprotected sex and male prostitution.

Dr. Joseph Kenan, president of the American Society for Adolescent Psychiatry, is also being investigated by the Medical Board of California on at least four complaints by parents who hired him to do custody evaluations, according to records and correspondence reviewed by The Times.

Dr. Kenan, president of the American Society for Adolescent Psychiatry, was also mentioned in an article posted on a Fathers Rights site: Sexual Abuse Accusations Color Custody Battles  Notice the ads about female sex offenders and women who lie about paternity on the right hand side.

Kenan believes in the discredited idea of parental alienation syndrome, an idea created by Dr. Richard Gardner, who defended child molesters, and promoted by fathers rights groups:

“Parental alienation—when one parent programs a child against the other parent—is one reason for false allegations of abuse by a child: one parent encourages the child to accuse the other. The parent can be subtle in encouraging the child to make sexual allegations by not supporting the child’s relationship with the other parent and by criticizing the other parent in the child’s presence, which can cause the child to adopt one parent’s negative view of the other. However, it is important to avoid jumping to conclusions that the accused parent is guilty, or that the other parent is behind the allegations.”

He seems to think children who repeat themselves are likely to be lying:

“Review the initial statement made by the child or adolescent, if it is available as a videotape, audiotape, transcription, or police report. “The first interview done by police and CPS is often videotaped. If that is available, watch it. The more the child or adolescent repeats the statements, the less reliable the statements are. If you are able to view an older interview, it may be more truthful than your own interview with the child,” he said.”

Kenan is not just one bad apple, he’s one of many child custody evaluators who uses bias and high fees to taint the family court system. It’s nothing short of scary that family court has such little oversight of custody evaluators.