Monday, April 24, 2006

More on police rape and suppression orders.

Idiot/Savant sent me an article on the latest police rape case:

A former police officer extradited from Australia on historic rape and sexual abuse charges was today sent for trial in the High Court.

The man, whose name is suppressed, faces allegations from two girls, then aged between 12 and 16, comprising four counts of indecent assault and one of rape, all in Rotorua in 1980.
This, again, shows, that what happened to Louise Nicholas wasn't an isolated incident. There was a culture of rape, violence, and abuse of power amongst Rotorua cops in the 1980s (and who knows how long before, and after). It infuriates me that the courts and the media have seen these as seperate incidents.

My main problem with the way that Rickards, Schollum, and Shipton were tried was never the suppression orders (although I can understand why ). But I do think there can be real problems with suppression orders, particularly when they suppress the names of men accused of rape or sexual assault.

Eva Radich had an interesting couple of interviews about a Taranaki case. A New Plymouth doctor has been granted name suppression; he is facing 20 charges of sexual assault. The reason he has been granted name suppression because his business might be damaged if people knew these accusations were made against him.

The reason this makes me so angry is shows that the court system doesn't trust women to know what other women have said about men. It presumes to know better than us, about how we can keep ourselves safe.


  1. red it's not true that sexual allegations more than other type condemn someone before they get to the court room. If it was then rape would not have low conviction rates.

    You are saying that it's more important not to tarnish an innocent person's reputation, than it is to trust women with the information that we can use to make ourselves safe - I disagree.

  2. I agree that there should be a high standard of proof. But what that means is

    I agree that no other consequences should be put by those in power against someone who can't be proved guilty beyond reasonable doubt. But no-one has a right to practice as a doctor. Particularly not when that 'right' can only be maintained by suppressing information.

    Women can't be kept safe, they can just be stopped from keeping themselves safe, which is what is happening in this case.