Little or no follow-up

The familiar story

Mecklenburg County [North Carolina] District Attorney Spencer Merriweather said he will not order an outside review of reported rapes and sexual assaults at Myers Park High School by the N.C. State Bureau of Investigation.

Merriweather, through a spokeswoman, refused to answer questions about whether he had confidence that the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department appropriately investigated six reported cases of rape and sexual assault that have been detailed in WBTV investigations.

The six women who reported their cases to both police and administrators said they had little or no follow-up from police. In one case, WBTV has confirmed, a CMPD school resource officer assigned to Myers Park didn’t even fill out a police report detailing the reported rape.

Maybe the police had good reasons in all six cases…but the statistics on rape prosecutions are horrifying. Only a tiny percent go to trial and only a tiny percent of those result in convictions. Do we think they’re all just a little misunderstanding?

[O]ne former local prosecutor, who now works in private practice as a criminal defense attorney, questioned why CMPD didn’t take basic steps to investigate the reported rapes and sexual assaults, including having the students participate in a forensic interview.

“There’s trained social workers. There are trained interviewers that are meant not to lead the alleged victims down a path of saying certain things happened but, at the same time, acknowledging the complications with talking to a sexual assault victim, or somebody that’s reporting that,” Jeremy Smith, the former local prosecutor said.

Yes but rape is hard to prosecute so…we don’t.

Smith said that, in his time as a prosecutor, sexual assault cases were among the toughest cases to charge and required extensive investigation by police.

“It sounds like, here, it never got past step one,” he said.

Oh well, it’s only girls.

H/t Rob

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