It has been awhile since my last posting. Sharing my story has turned out to be much harder than I thought it would be. I have decided today to talk about the issue surrounding the attitudes that still seem to be present today regarding sexual assault, sexual abuse, and molestation. If you have read my posting, you know I am not a “writer”. I am a survivor of molestation, sexual assault, rape and alike. My voice was ignored when I was younger. Due to some of the same ridiculous attitudes that seem to be present TODAY!!!
What fired me up today was a news article about Hania Aguilar detailing some findings in her autopsy report and the fact that two Robeson deputies were suspended for allowing a backlog of rape information and evidence just sit, which could have jailed her killer before she was attacked.
The fact that perpetrators seem to have more rights and are defended by just about all authorities more than the victim, just angers me to no end. The fact that victims regularly get no justice based on “lack” of evidence puts a light on the fact that the victims come second. As a child that was molested for 8 years by my father, told authorities after I ran away, then stood on the witness stand against my father, my self-worth was shattered when the judge dismissed the case stating I had no evidence. All those years of pain, fear and rape went unpunished. Not to mention my father raped others after me.
IT IS TIME TO TAKE IT SERIOUSLY! According to hrf (healthreasearchfunding.org):
- The number of registered sex offenders in the US is 747,000
- 33% are currently under correctional supervision
- The average age of a rapist is 31 and 52.2% are white males
- An estimated 24% of those serving time for rape and 19% of those serving for sexual assault had been on probation or parole at the time of a repeat assault
- Only 2% of the Catholic clergy sexual abusers ever served time, despite over 10,000 victims and over 4,300 victims
- Offenders with a previous sex offense conviction have 37% reoffense rate
- Rapists repeat at upto 35% rate
- Second offenses occur while the offender is living in a supervised community is 60%
- It costs $22,000 per year to house a sex offender
- 30% of children sexually abused with become offenders as adults
- Around 47% of victims are revictimized by their family and or extended family
- Only 10% of all sex crimes actually result in criminal conviction
- Only 33% of the sex offenses that occur to children between ages 12-19 are ever reported.Only 30% of rapes are ever reported.
That is just a small portion of the information, and it just makes me sick. It seems day after day there are cases where a rape, kidnapping, or sexual assault is perpetrated by someone that has a record or has been accused in the past. The mentality that it happened years ago, such as with people in powerful positions, is a disgrace. The idea that they have accomplished a great deal and are pillars in the community so therefore their word must be taken over the victim, is convenient for the unjust attitude towards victims.
Are there people that are evil and will make false claims…..um yes! That sickens me even more. That is a very small percentage, and those that have been traumatized and victimized are left with the unjust pain. There has to be a change in the way sexual assault and abuse is viewed in the justice system. I applaud the #metoo movement and #timesup for shining a light on the epidemic, but there is still so much that must be changed.
Medical and psychological technologies have come along way since my case back in 1980. I am certain that psychological testing, and deeper investigations could be done to provide validity to victims accounts. In addition determine the psyche of the accused. I think about Jaycee Dugard and her rapist/kidnapper. He had a record and was under a judicial eye. For the victims that are lucky enough to see justice, why isn’t the punishment more severe? I think of Steven Stayner. His rapist/kidnapper only received 7 years . The same amount of years that poor boy was held captive and repeatedly raped. Just ridiculous!!! The courts should allow and take into account any and all previous convictions or reports of rape, molestation, or sexual assault. That information should NEVER be inadmissible. Changes in the justice system must change now!
In my case, the judge stated that I needed something in writing or a recording of the molestation. WHAT? It was all I could do to run away with the clothes on my back when I was 13 years old. I can’t even imagine the amount of children my father raped and molested over the years, I’m positive it was hundreds. The only time he was convicted (that I know of) was around the time I was 18 years old. A 13 year old friend of my younger brother started to write the sexual encounters in her diary and her mother came across the information. Even with the proof in writing and her testimony, my father served 1 year in Chino (a work prison where he made a paycheck).
The photo above is one of my little brothers and me. I was already being molested at the time. Of course, I had NO idea that what was happening to me was not normal. I lived in a “Christian” home. The bible was shoved down our throats and as good “Christian” children we were told to obey our elders, not speak up or question. My father for a time used the molestation as a punishment. Just image being 7 years old and you forget to put your toys away, so you get raped for it. There is so much more to my story that I will continue to share in following postings. Today I just felt the need to vent. #victimsmatter