Instapundit has a good roundup of one of the higher profile cases of alleged sexual assault on campus, wherein Emma Sulkowicz claimed (months later) that her friend Paul Nungesser turned a consensual sexual encounter into a rape.
Subsequent investigations by the university, and by police, cleared Mr. Nungesser of wrongdoing, and yet Ms. Sulkowicz has become a cause celebre on campus via her theatrical carriage of a mattress as supposed evidence that Columbia failed to properly investigate her allegations, and worse, failed to expel Mr. Nungesser, in spite of literally no evidence that he committed any wrongdoing. Cathy Young’s reporting at The Daily Beast is worth reading in its entirety.
And of course, Ms. Sulkowicz, offered the chance to respond to Ms. Young’s questions for the Daily Beast article, tells a sympathetic reporter:
… “Normally I don’t respond to people who use my rapist as collateral in order to make me talk to them…It’s an awful feeling where this reporter is digging through my personal life. At this point I didn’t realize that she’s extremely anti-feminist and would do this in order to shame me.”
You and I surely immediately had the same thought, one that Jim Treacher of course put pithily on Twitter:
"Why are reporters digging into my personal life? Can't they see I'm carrying a MATTRESS?" http://t.co/DOsNUYm2Ak
— Jim Treacher (@jtLOL) February 4, 2015
In a case that is a good deal more ambiguous, the US Army recently convicted MAJ Erik J. Burgess, a former sexual assault prosecutor, of a variety of sexual assault crimes, and sentenced him to 20 years imprisonment.
But as Jonn notes in a follow-up post, the evidence presented during the Article 32 hearing, while sufficient to clear the low bar of bringing charges, hardly paints a clear cut picture of guilt.
We wrote about Major Burris, a former sexual assault prosecutor for the Army, a few weeks ago when he was sentenced to 20 years in prison for rape. Our friends at MilitaryCorruption.com, however, had a different take on the case. They sent us the results of the Article 32 investigating officer’s report, which I present below;
[scribd id=254466182 key=key-14IyfXTfjJgg0kKsa4tL mode=scroll]
To be sure, I have not seen the evidence presented at trial. But to my layman’s eye, the accuser’s story stinks. It will be interesting to see what the appeal process finds.
Rape and sexual assault are heinous crimes, and deserving of severe punishment. But we must also remain true to our commitment to justice, and the search for truth.