Earlier this week we were upset to hear an 18-year-old woman at Hofstra University on Long Island had allegedly been gang-raped by five men in a dorm bathroom. Each day, we read increasingly troubling newspaper reports describing how the student had gone back to a dorm room with one of the alleged rapists who took her phone at a frat party. There, she said, five men took her to a stall in the men’s bathroom, tied her up with rope and gang-raped her.
But guess what? Apparently, it’s not true. Today the District Attorney for Nassau County on Long Island reported that the accuser, whom she called “very troubled,” told police the sex was consensual. When the young woman was told the incident may have been caught on video tape, she admitted she’d lied.Indeed, a lawyer for one of the men told the Associated Press, “[The video] showed just the opposite of what the allegations were. There was no tying up, there was no bruising, there was no screaming.” The girl has since been suspended from Hofstra and charges have been dropped against the alleged rapists. [NY1, Yahoo News]
What. The. Hell. Way to nearly ruin these five men’s lives, Pinocchio—not to mention contributing to the pernicious stereotypes that 1.) women lie about rape and 2.) drunken frat parties are totally rape-y. I know it’s perverse to say, but I’m actually glad this woman lied about some/all of the details. That means it didn’t happen the way we thought it happened: a gang rape by five men, in a situation that sounded absolutely predatory, is hard to stomach.
Still, I’m not happy about women who make false claims of rape and cast doubt on the rest of us, especially after women’s rights advocates have worked so hard to address real incidents of rape and sexual abuse. The thought that police, family or friends may not believe a woman who’s really been sexually assaulted because of women like this one makes my stomach turn.
Way to piss on “the sisterhood,” sister.