In 40 Minutes This Man's Life Was Upended, He Only Just Got It Back
We recently came across this post on Imgur that touched us.
“In the autumn of 2012 I moved 700 miles from my home to begin a new life with my wife and child nearer my in-laws in an area totally foreign to me where I knew no one. After a few months, my wife and I separated amicably and planned a smooth uncontested divorce.
On Memorial Day 2013 I met a young woman at a bar, we went back to my home and had a forty-minute stand, after which I dropped her off at her car and said goodbye. Two days later I was doing yard work when my home was raided by the local police and federal Marshals (for reasons I still don’t understand) serving warrants for my arrest.
No one would tell me why I was being arrested until I was put into an interrogation room and I demanded to see the warrants. The investigators left and returned a moment later with a handful of papers. As I began to read them, my stomach dropped. I was being charged with rape, kidnapping, aggravated sexual battery, and a host of other charges, the maximum penalty for some being twenty-five years to life imprisonment. With my freedom in the balance and my head reeling from what was going on, I elected to not speak with them, and took the opportunity to tell the police how despicable I found their behavior by presuming me guilty without first attempting to talk to me.
I was booked and put into a community cell at the jailhouse. An inmate who had been watching television around the corner stepped up to me and said, “Damn, you got a nice house.” That’s when I learned that the sheriff was holding a press conference on my lawn and announcing to the public that they had caught a rapist. Moments later, deputies whisked me out of that cell, and I then spent eight days in solitary confinement until I received a bail hearing. Having no criminal record outside of traffic violations, my attorney persuaded the judge to release me on bond, even though my newness to the area made the prosecution consider me a flight risk.
My formerly amicable divorce turned into a bitter battle in which I was denied visitation with my son for three months until such time as a judge ordered visitation.
Yesterday I received a certified copy of the dismissal of my arrest warrants. It seems that I was used as an excuse to get out of a DUI. The complainant failed to show up to three scheduled meetings with the prosecutor’s office, whereas I pushed my attorney to schedule one for which I was early.
I spent sixteen months living with the crushing weight that I could be imprisoned for the rest of my life due to false allegations. It seems that the complainant has a history of filing false police reports, and has had her ex-husband arrested, her mother arrested, and subsequent to my arrest, alleged two other men raped her. Thankfully for those two men, the police caught onto her game and they were spared the turmoil I suffered.
I was ostracized by my neighbors and the community. Even the formerly chatty women at the gas station down the street refused to make eye contact with me. The costs attendant to my defense and divorce have nearly driven me to bankruptcy.
The prosecutor’s office has enough evidence to charge the complainant with a litany of crimes, but it is not politically palatable to charge a rape “victim.” That’s a shame, because I was the true victim in this ordeal. My only option is a civil suit against the complainant, but she’s unemployed with two children, and living with her parents.
False allegations of rape are no trifling matter. It is not a charge to be leveled without careful consideration.
This post will not receive as many views as the broadcast and print news of my charges, but it felt good to publish the account of what happens to someone falsely accused.
EDIT: I appreciate the well-wishes, but I’m mostly over it. I was depressed for quite some time, however my life is getting back in order. I’ve made a few amazing friends here, and have a new appreciation for those who stood by me, including my BFF who dropped what he was doing and flew 800 miles to testify at my bond hearing, and another who flew 1,000 to hang out for a weekend. I didn’t hit rock bottom in the sense I was homeless with no prospects for a positive future, though I was as close as I ever wish to be. My perspectives have changed for the better. “
People such as this woman make it all the more difficult for the genuine victims of rape. We really wish that she’d have thought her actions through, not only because of the terrible ordeal she put this man through, but also because there are genuine victims everywhere having to fight to prove that they told the truth and battle against the negative stigma that can often come with reporting somebody for rape. Her actions aren’t just damaging one for man, they are damaging men and women everywhere. Thankfully in this case justice was done.