oc rape mistrial

Remember that Orange County gang rape trial I’ve been writing about? (Here, here, and here.) The one where the defense attorney seemed to be relying on the most gruesome tactics imaginable, claiming an unconscious (possibly drugged) 16-year-old girl was such a big slut that she basically deserved to be raped by three asshole boys?
Well, the sickening defense efforts appear to have worked. The jury has deadlocked and the judge has declared a mistrial. According a juror, the panel was leaning towards not guilty. All this despite the boys’ videotaping themselves in the act. Amazing.
If you want to know what sort of Boy Scouts we’re talking about here, check out this video of the rapists. (Oops, make that “alleged” rapists. Old journalism habits die hard.) I guess that’s the way they do it in the O.C.

6 thoughts on “oc rape mistrial”

  1. Truly, I am amazed that the jury has deadlocked. The coverage makes the defense sound like Draconian thinkers hell-bent on terrorizing the victim even more than she already has been. What’s the deal?

  2. I’ve been following this since you first mentioned it and I’m just amazed. The prosecution is vowing to try these idiots again. Let’s hope!

  3. Well obviously I don’t advocate rape under any circumstances. However, I have to say that if the Defense team were using “most gruesome tactics imaginable” – as long as they were within the rules of the Court – then they were just doing their job they way they are supposed to. You can’t blame them for doing their job as defined in the U.S. Constitution. Every Defendant in a criminal case is innocent until the government proves guilt beyond a reasonable doubt to a jury of peers. Of course it’s not a perfect system, but it’s the system we have in place.
    Criminal defense attorneys have one thing that makes them look good: at least they aren’t prosecutors. Prosecutors just want *someone* found guilty, and will usually go to any lengths to ensure it, no matter if they committed the crime or not. Our whole system is based on the presupposition that it’s better to let 10 (or 100) criminals free than to send 1 innocent person to prison or death. People may not like how the system works, but it actually works the way it’s supposed to a lot of the time (for defendants who have money.) Criminals are “supposed” to often go free since we have a pretty high standard of proof. On the other hand, there are a lot of people (usually who didn’t have money) who are falsely sent to prison or death.

  4. Thanks kindly for the civics lesson, Charles, but I do believe I *can* blame the defense attorney. Free country, after all. I, along with every reader of this site, am well aware of how the adversarial system of justice works.
    There are plenty of people who, by doing their jobs “well” (as “well” is defined in their professional universe), do harm to society. The Klan may have a truly talented public relations man. No doubt Mohammed Atta had extraordinary organizational skills, and Hitler was a mighty fine orator. But showing professional skill in the service of evil doesn’t make one beyond criticism.

  5. Amen, Josh. There’s also the whole rape shield law issue. I don’t know if California has much of a rape shield law, but it sure wasn’t exercised for this poor girl. (Call your senators! Protect rape victims!)

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