Officials probe ‘Satanic’ animal sacrifices on Long Island, Kenneth Clarke ‘failed to act’ over Lord Janner and Cyril Smith child abuse tip-offs
March 15, 2016 Comments Off on Officials probe ‘Satanic’ animal sacrifices on Long Island, Kenneth Clarke ‘failed to act’ over Lord Janner and Cyril Smith child abuse tip-offs
Officials probe ‘Satanic’ animal sacrifices on Long Island
By Dean Balsamini March 13, 2016
The Suffolk County SPCA is probing whether a satanic cult has been beheading goats and chickens on Long Island for the past two years.
Officials also believe the recent torture of a 7-month-old pit bull found hanging from a tree last month may be part of a gang initiation rite.
“Animal abuse is widespread. We’ve found them in all areas of the county,” Suffolk County SPCA Chief Roy Gross told The Post.
Suffolk County SPCA Capt. Paul Llobel said several incidents “may be tied to religious and satanic ritual. There’s a lot going on here right now….
The Suffolk SPCA held a training class on ritualistic animal sacrifice and the occult at the county Police Academy last August.
Representatives from Long Island law enforcement heard guest speaker Marcos Quinones, author of “The Goddess of Death: La Santa Muerte and Satan: An Intelligence Report” and a recognized cult expert with the FBI.
In July, the SPCA put out a call for “humane investigators” in the wake of the animal sacrifices….
Kenneth Clarke ‘failed to act’ over Lord Janner and Cyril Smith child abuse tip-offs
Government’s sex abuse inquiry – which has first preliminary hearing on Wednesday – will hear claims that former home secretary was warned of abuse in the early 90s
By David Barrett, Home Affairs Correspondent 8 Mar 2016
Kenneth Clarke failed to act on warnings that Greville Janner and Cyril Smith had been accused of child sex abuse by several alleged victims, the Government’s official inquiry will be told.
As Justice Lowell Goddard holds her first preliminary hearing, a victims’ campaigner will claim that Mr Clarke, who was home secretary from 1992 to 1993, was sent details of a series of sex assaults by the MPs.
The allegations by Nigel O’Mara, a leading figure in the sex abuse survivors organisation WhiteFlowers, will add further weight to claims that information was overlooked by the authorities.
Lawyers for Mr O’Mara said they would challenge a decision by Justice Goddard not to award their client special “core participant” status in the inquiry, which grants the right to examine evidence and be represented in the hearings.
In a statement released ahead of the hearing, Mr O’Mara said: “In 1992 I co-founded Survivors UK, a helpline for survivors of male rape and sexual abuse.
“We received a series of calls from young men alleging that they had been sexually abused, while they were children in care, by Greville Janner MP and Cyril Smith MP.
“In 1992/93 I wrote, on behalf of Survivors UK, to the home secretary, Kenneth Clarke, informing him of the multiple allegations of sexual assault on children by Greville Janner MP and Cyril Smith MP.”
The allegations were made in calls to telephone counsellors at a hotline run by the charity by young men who said they had been abused while living in children’s homes.
“I asked the home secretary to investigate these allegations of sexual abuse of children by these powerful men. No response was received,” said Mr O’Mara.
“A key issue with Greville Janner and Cyril Smith is how they were able to go unchallenged and unprosecuted for so many years….
Smithsonian To Post Sign At Exhibition Featuring Bill Cosby-Owned Art, Alexis Jay on child sex abuse: ‘Politicians wanted to keep a lid on it’, Rotherham victims
July 15, 2015 Comments Off on Smithsonian To Post Sign At Exhibition Featuring Bill Cosby-Owned Art, Alexis Jay on child sex abuse: ‘Politicians wanted to keep a lid on it’, Rotherham victims
Smithsonian To Post Sign At Exhibition Featuring Bill Cosby-Owned Art
July 14, 2015 Krishnadev Calamur
The Smithsonian’s National Museum of African Art in Washington will post a sign Wednesday telling visitors an exhibition that includes art owned by Bill Cosby and his wife, Camille, is “fundamentally about the artworks and the artists who created them, not Mr. Cosby,” representatives for the Smithsonian Institution say.
The sign, which will be posted at 10 a.m., comes amid allegations of sexual misconduct directed against Cosby by more than two dozen women. Some of them say he drugged and raped them. Cosby has not been charged in any of the alleged assaults.
Last week it emerged that the comedian testified in 2005 he obtained the sedative Quaalude with the intent of giving the drug to women with whom he wanted to have sex, and he acknowledged giving it to at least one woman. The Los Angeles Police Department says it is conducting at least one current criminal investigation into allegations of sexual assault against Cosby….
Alexis Jay on child sex abuse: ‘Politicians wanted to keep a lid on it’
Her devastating Rotherham report blew open the national debate on child sex abuse. Now the ‘retired’ social worker is investigating historic claims on an unprecedented scale, taking on Westminster, the BBC and NHS
Helen Pidd Monday 13 July 2015
Alexis Jay officially retired two years ago – not that you’d notice. In 2013 she stepped down from her role as Scotland’s chief social work adviser, shortly after being awarded an OBE. But rather than tending to her garden she ended up digging up horrific claims of child sexual exploitation in Rotherham. That job done, the scalps of many officials taken, she moved on to sort out Northern Ireland’s safeguarding children boards.
But last week the 66-year-old began her biggest task yet, when she joined the panel of what has been described as Britain’s most complicated and wide-reaching statutory inquiry ever. The independent inquiry into child sex abuse (IICSA) is expected to take five years investigating claims of abuse in faith and religious organisations, the criminal justice system, local authorities and national institutions such as the BBC, NHS and Ministry of Defence….
“By victims we are not talking about children who were at risk of sexual exploitation, who were friendly with victims or who moved in the same circle,” she told the journalists. “The 1,400 victims are those who had actually experienced sexual exploitation.” Determined that no one could bat away her findings, she had produced a 153-page report that spelled out in plain language the appalling abuse suffered by children aged 10-16 in the South Yorkshire town (Rotherham) between 1997 and 2013….
September 24, 2014 Comments Off on Child abuse inquiry told of sexual assaults, beatings in Darwin home
Child abuse inquiry told of sexual assaults, beatings in Darwin home
Commission is hearing from members of the stolen generations who say they were abused in the Northern Territory
Helen Davidson theguardian.com, Monday 22 September 2014
Indigenous children were beaten, sexually assaulted, stripped and chained to beds, and forced to eat their own vomit, it has been alleged at the royal commission into institutional responses to child sexual abuse on Monday.
The 17th public hearing of the royal commission began hearing from members of the stolen generations who say they were sexually abused at a Darwin home.
It’s examining how the government and administrators responded to the allegations of child sexual abuse by employees at the Retta Dixon home between 1946 and 1980, when it closed.
Retta Dixon was one of the main government-run homes for children of mixed Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal descent forcibly removed from their families. Established by Christian missionaries in the 1930s, it also housed unmarried mothers and their babies, and temporary visitors. At its peak it held 120 people, according to the federal government’s 1997 Bringing Them Home report….
It is the first time the commission has held a hearing in the Northern Territory. It is also the first public hearing to predominantly involve Indigenous people.
A number of Aboriginal women gave evidence at the inquiry into the Parramatta Girls Home and Hay Institute.
Of all the people who have contacted the commission, 827 (18%) are Indigenous, the chief commissioner, Peter McClellan, said as he opened the public hearing on Monday morning.
He added that 9% of people coming to private sessions are from Aboriginal communities.
The inquiry into the Retta Dixon home is expected to run for about two weeks.
Lawmakers Blast Child-Abuse Inquiry on Tax Shelter Jersey Island, 40 percent of women with severe mental illness are victims of rape, attempted rape
September 11, 2014 Comments Off on Lawmakers Blast Child-Abuse Inquiry on Tax Shelter Jersey Island, 40 percent of women with severe mental illness are victims of rape, attempted rape
Lawmakers Blast Child-Abuse Inquiry on Tax Shelter Jersey Island
By Leah McGrath Goodman 9/10/14
Neil McMurray used to be a professional fisherman and crabber—until one of his children was repeatedly bullied in school and he found himself investigating what he began to view as a startling lack of concern for the welfare of children in his tiny island home.
“For the past decade, I have been writing about what I have come to see as a culture of concealment within our government, education and justice systems, which have repeatedly failed the most vulnerable members of our society, particularly children,” says McMurray.
McMurray lives on the island of Jersey, a $2 trillion tax shelter in the Channel Islands. Just 14 miles off the west coast of France, Jersey is part of neither Great Britain nor the European Union but a “Crown dependency”—meaning it is technically accountable to the queen of Great Britain but governs itself.
A 47-year-old married father of two, McMurray launched a humble but highly influential blog, Voice for Children, around the time the island’s police announced in 2008 that nearly 200 people from different parts of the world had come forward to report they had been victims of child predators on the island.
Since then, McMurray has assiduously covered child-protection issues in Jersey, gaining a following that includes global human-rights activists as well as the island’s locals, not excluding Jersey’s chief minister, Ian Gorst. But he has also gathered a good deal of notoriety….
Dubbed Operation Rectangle, the 2008 police investigation into widespread child abuse on the island yielded 151 suspects in Jersey, which is only 5 by 9 miles in size. Of those, 30 are now dead and fewer than a dozen were convicted, sparking widespread outrage from victims and witnesses and creating deep divisions on the island.
During Operation Rectangle, a dig under a government-run Jersey children’s home, Haut de la Garenne, unearthed the remains of children aged 6 to 12, according to a Jersey police press release, which noted that “no people are reported missing” and “there are no suspects for murder.” The probe closed in 2010 under questionable circumstances.
In July, a long-awaited Committee of Inquiry convened hearings in Jersey to investigate whether there may have been a cover-up of decades of atrocities against children. The inquiry stated September 5 that “new witnesses are coming forward all the time, and it is anticipated the hearings will last many months.”….
40 percent of women with severe mental illness are victims of rape, attempted rape
September 3, 2014
University College London
Summary: Women with severe mental illness are up to five times more likely than the general population to be victims of sexual assault and two to three times more likely to suffer domestic violence, reveals new research.
Women with severe mental illness are up to five times more likely than the general population to be victims of sexual assault and two to three times more likely to suffer domestic violence, reveals new research led by UCL (University College London) and King’s College London funded by the Medical Research Council and the Big Lottery.
The study, published in Psychological Medicine, found that 40% of women surveyed with severe mental illness had suffered rape or attempted rape in adulthood, of whom 53% had attempted suicide as a result. In the general population, 7% of women had been victims of rape or attempted rape, of whom 3% had attempted suicide. 12% of men with severe mental illness had been seriously sexually assaulted, compared with 0.5% of the general population….
“The number of rape victims among women with severe mental illness is staggering,” says lead author Dr Hind Khalifeh of UCL’s Division of Psychiatry. “At the time of the survey, 10% had experienced sexual assault in the past year, showing that the problems continue throughout adulthood. Considering the high rate of suicide attempts among rape victims in this group, clinicians assessing people after a suicide attempt should consider asking them if they have been sexually assaulted. Currently this is not done and so patients may miss opportunities to receive specialist support.”
Men and women with mental illness were also found to be more likely to be victims of domestic violence than the general population. Domestic violence includes emotional, physical and sexual abuse. 69% of women and 49% of men with severe mental illness reported adulthood domestic violence.
Domestic violence from family members (other than partners) made up 63% of total domestic violence cases against psychiatric patients compared with 35% of the general population…. http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/09/140903204125.htm
Child sex abuse royal commission speaks to parents of children allegedly abused in Victorian state care, British Police Search Property of Cliff Richard Over Sex Abuse Claim
August 15, 2014 Comments Off on Child sex abuse royal commission speaks to parents of children allegedly abused in Victorian state care, British Police Search Property of Cliff Richard Over Sex Abuse Claim
Child sex abuse royal commission speaks to parents of children allegedly abused in Victorian state care
By the national reporting team’s Dan Oakes
15 Aug 2014
The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse has interviewed parents of children who were allegedly sexually and physically abused while in state care in Victoria….
Parents have called for the royal commission to hold public hearings over abuse in Victoria’s out-of-home care system, such as those already held regarding the Catholic Church, Salvation Army, Swimming Australia and after-school care operated by the YMCA.
The public hearings have exposed failings that led to the sexual abuse of children in the care of those institutions….
Public hearings about the Catholic Church’s “Melbourne response” to child abuse will be conducted for two weeks beginning on Monday.
The development comes after revelations in recent months by the ABC that children in residential care units have been targeted by paedophile gangs, and have been subjected to horrific sexual and physical abuse by older children.
Last month, a judgement handed down in a Victorian court savaged the Department of Human Services over its treatment of two young siblings who were allegedly raped by older children in residential care and witnessed the sexual and physical abuse of other children….
British Police Search Property of Cliff Richard Over Sex Abuse Claim
By KATRIN BENNHOLD AUG. 14, 2014
LONDON — Another prominent British public figure has been caught up in allegations of pedophilia.
On Thursday, the police searched a property belonging to Cliff Richard, one of Britain’s most successful recording artists, as part of an investigation into a claim “of a sexual nature.” The allegation, which dates to the 1980s, involves a boy who was younger than 16 at the time, a police statement said.
The claim relates to an alleged sexual assault at a 1985 faith rally in Sheffield where Billy Graham appeared, the BBC and The Guardian reported. The police did not say whether the search of Mr. Richard’s house made him a suspect or a witness or neither.
No arrests have been made and Mr. Richard, 73, who is currently out of the country, issued his own statement, calling the claim “completely false.”….
Leading the coverage was the explosive revelation in 2012 that Jimmy Savile, a former children’s television host with the name recognition of Johnny Carson, had raped and sexually assaulted scores of children. Mr. Savile, a BBC staple and friend of former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, used his status and charity work to gain access to vulnerable children in schools and even hospitals. He died in 2011 at 84.
Since then, other well-known personalities have been accused or convicted of sexual offenses involving children, among them Rolf Harris, once one of Britain’s most popular television entertainers, who last month was sentenced to five years and nine months in prison for a range of sexual offenses committed decades ago against girls as young as 8. Others who have been convicted include Max Clifford, 71, Britain’s best-known publicist; and Stuart Hall, 84, a former broadcaster for the BBC.
The political establishment, too, has been in the spotlight, both for sexual misconduct and for apparently covering it up.
Cyril Smith, a once-respected member of Parliament who died in 2010, was accused of abusing boys in a children’s home in his constituency….
May 10, 2013 Comments Off on Ariel Castro, Cleveland Kidnappings – History of Abuse, Pentagon estimates 26,000 sexual assaults
– Hints of a dark side in Cleveland abduction suspect’s life
– In note, Ariel Castro claimed he was sexually abused as a child
– Cleveland kidnapping suspect had history of abuse, former lover said
– Cleveland kidnappings: Suspect Ariel Castro had ‘no flaw,’ neighbor says
– Pentagon estimates 26,000 sexual assaults
Hints of a dark side in Cleveland abduction suspect’s life
By Daniel Trotta CLEVELAND Wed May 8, 2013
(Reuters) – In hindsight, there were signs of a darker side to Ariel Castro, the Cleveland man suspected of abducting three girls and holding them captive for around a decade.
Divorced years ago and never seen in the company of women, Castro suddenly started showing up in the largely Latino, working-class neighborhood with a 6-year-old girl. It was his girlfriend’s child, he told neighbors.
Castro, 52, was believed to have lived alone, yet on his lunch break would bring home enough bags of fast food and beverages for several people.
He was a school bus driver given mostly “excellent” marks on his performance appraisals, but was repeatedly disciplined, including for one incident when he was accused of calling a young student a “bitch” and leaving the child alone on a bus. These incidents eventually caught up with him, and he was fired last November….
“Ariel was in my garage probably five or six years ago. We were recording a song, an idea we had – a little hard rock with some Latin,” said Joe Popow, 45, a father of six who said he has known the Castro brothers since childhood.
“And – you’re going to laugh – he said he was in the CIA. And I don’t know if he was joking or not, but it’s the way he said it, how serious he said it. I didn’t know what he was capable of. That just put me on defense, and I just started stepping away,” Popow said….
In note, Ariel Castro claimed he was sexually abused as a child
CBS News May 9, 2013
A Cleveland man allegedly confessed years ago in writing to taking the three women he’s accused of raping and holding captive and said that he was abused as a child and raped by an uncle, CBS News senior investigative producer Pat Milton reports.
According to a law enforcement source, Ariel Castro apparently contemplated committing suicide in the lengthy, handwritten note discovered in his house from which the women – Amanda Berry, 27, Gina DeJesus, 23, and Michelle Knight, 32 – escaped Monday.
According to the source, Castro wrote about his whole life, saying that he was abused by his parents as a child and that he was raped by an uncle.
Castro also provided details about taking each of his alleged victims, who went missing in their teens and early 20s. The note was discovered by FBI agents searching his house this week.
CBS News correspondent Dean Reynolds reports Castro called himself a “sexual predator” and blamed the women for their own kidnappings, but he asks for whatever money he has to be donated to his victims after his death.
Investigators inferred from the 2004-dated note that Castro was going to commit suicide. He asked in the note that all of his money be provided to each of his victims….
Cleveland kidnapping suspect had history of abuse, former lover said
By Alana Semuels and Ari Bloomekatz
May 8, 2013
CLEVELAND — One of the men suspected of imprisoning and abusing three recently freed young women was earlier accused of a series of violent acts against the mother of four of his children and was ordered to complete domestic violence and substance abuse counseling.
Grimilda Figueroa, who in various court documents filed in 2005 said she had four children with Ariel Castro, told authorities that Castro broke her nose twice, knocked out her tooth and threatened to kill her and her daughters several times.
“Ariel Castro and I were never married. During our relationship, he was very abusive,” Figueroa said, according to an affidavit filed in Cuyahoga County in 2005.
Cleveland kidnappings: Suspect Ariel Castro had ‘no flaw,’ neighbor says
By Michael Muskal and Alana Semuels
May 7, 2013
CLEVELAND – Ariel Castro, the former school bus driver who is a suspect in the kidnapping of three women who escaped years of incarceration, was a friendly man who befriended area children and gave no hint of what was happening behind the locked doors of his Seymour Avenue house, his neighbors say.
“If a kid didn’t have a father, they would look up to him. There was no flaw,” said Juan Perez, 27, who lives two doors down from the house from where the three abducted women escaped on Monday. “I guess he had a great mask to cover a monster.”
Castro was known for giving children rides in his four-wheeler. He attended neighborhood parties and would have a beer….
Hector Lugo, 31, who lives on the same street, said he still can’t believe the friendly guy who would give his nieces rides was allegedly the perpetrator behind kidnappings that have baffled this city for a decade.
“He used to drive my nieces on his four-wheeler. That’s what threw me off,” Lugo said. “They always thought of him as a cool person — a cool person to kick it with. He was an outgoing person, he never messed with anyone. He was always cool.”….
Pentagon estimates 26,000 sexual assaults; Obama vows crackdown
By DAVID S. CLOUD Tribune Washington Bureau Tuesday, May. 7, 2013
WASHINGTON — The Pentagon estimated that 26,000 members of the military were sexually assaulted in unreported incidents last year – 35 percent more than in 2010 – a severe trend that senior officials warned could threaten recruiting and retention of women in uniform….
police in Arlington, Va., arrested the chief of the Air Force sexual-assault prevention branch for allegedly groping a woman outside a bar near the Pentagon, the latest sexual scandal to hit the headlines. Officials said Lt. Col. Jeffrey Krusinski was removed from his post after the arrest.
….An investigation that began in 2011 at Lackland Air Force Base in Texas has turned up 59 cases of sexual assault of military recruits by drill instructors….
Clergy abuse victims call on Pope Francis to open files on Argentina’s pedophile priests, Indian legislators pass strict anti-rape law, Abuse inquiry to proceed under changed law
March 20, 2013 Comments Off on Clergy abuse victims call on Pope Francis to open files on Argentina’s pedophile priests, Indian legislators pass strict anti-rape law, Abuse inquiry to proceed under changed law
Clergy abuse victims call on Pope Francis to open files on Argentina’s pedophile priests
By Associated Press, Tuesday, March 19, 2013
BUENOS AIRES, Argentina — Activists against abuse by Roman Catholic clergy urged Pope Francis on Tuesday to apologize for what they called the Argentine church’s protection of two priests who were eventually convicted of sexually assaulting children.
The U.S.-based Bishop Accountability group cited the case of Father Julio Cesar Grassi, who ran the “Happy Children” foundation and was convicted of pedophilia in 2008, and Father Napoleon Sasso, convicted in 2007 of abusing girls at a soup kitchen in suburban Buenos Aires.
The Buenos Aires archbishop’s office didn’t immediately respond Tuesday.
The pope’s authorized biographer, Sergio Rubin, told The Associated Press before Jorge Mario Bergoglio was elected pope last week that he had drawn an increasingly tough line on clergy abuse. Bergoglio insisted that accused priests face trial, and imposed a thorough screening process in an attempt to weed out future problems, Rubin said…..
Grassi was well known in Buenos Aires for persuading celebrities to donate to his “Happy Children” foundation, which ran orphanages and social outreach programs. Before he was convicted, Grassi praised Bergoglio for “never abandoning him.” Now he’s free on appeal, thanks in part to a church filing on his behalf.
Sasso, meanwhile, enjoys prison furloughs after serving half of a 17-year sentence for abusing five girls.
Sasso was assigned to the soup kitchen, at a chapel where his bedroom shared the only bathroom, after living in a home for wayward priests where he had been sent after accusations of pedophilia were raised against him in remote San Juan province.
“The bathroom had two doors. The girls would come in through the outside door, and the priest would bring them into his bedroom through the other, sexually abusing the girls,” Moreau said. “These were really poor people, who were there for free meals while their parents worked. They found an enormous amount of child pornography in his computer, semen, condoms.” It was a medical priest and a nun who discovered that Sasso abused 25 girls aged 3 to 16, but when they informed church officials, they were told to “remain patient,” and nothing was done, Moreau said.
Eventually, they sought higher authorities and the case was taken up by the criminal courts, but the mid-level officials who covered it up still have their positions, while the priest and nun were forced to work elsewhere, the lawyer said….
Indian legislators pass strict anti-rape law
By Rama Lakshmi Tuesday, March 19, 2013
NEW DELHI — The Indian Parliament’s lower house passed a landmark law Tuesday that sets tougher penalties for rapists and for police officers who refuse to file a woman’s complaint of rape, as well as criminalizing offenses such as stalking, voyeurism and acid attacks.
The amendments to existing law incorporate some of the sweeping changes that were demanded after the fatal gang rape of a young paramedical student in New Delhi in December, an incident that sparked a nationwide outcry against the lack of safety for women.
Despite the unprecedented protests that galvanized tens of thousands of Indians, the number of incidents of sexual assault has not diminished.
As lawmakers discussed the new law in Parliament on Tuesday, a British tourist fractured her leg when she jumped from the balcony of her hotel room in Agra, the city of the Taj Mahal, to escape being molested by the hotel owner, police said….
A provision requiring government approval for the trial of police officers, officials, politicians and judges on rape charges also has been lifted.
For the first time, the law criminalizes stalking and voyeurism, acts of sexual harassment that have long been grouped under the benign euphemism “love-teasing.” Hereafter, rapes that occur during religious and caste riots also will be treated as cases of aggravated sexual assault.
The law does not, however, address contentious issues such as marital rape or the legal impunity afforded to Indian military officers. Nor does it include a provision to prohibit politicians charged with rape from running for office….
Some activists working to end the trafficking of minors said the law is a watered-down version of what was initially proposed.
“Under the new law, trafficking of a minor is a crime only if rape or sexual exploitation occurs,” said Bhuwan Ribhu, a children’s rights activist….
March 19, 2013 Comments Off on UNC-Chapel Hill Faces Backlash Over Sexual Assault Victim Landen Gambill’s Honor Court Charge
UNC-Chapel Hill Faces Backlash Over Sexual Assault Victim Landen Gambill’s Honor Court Charge
The Huffington Post By Tyler Kingkade 03/06/2013
The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill is under intense community backlash after news broke that Landen Gambill, a sexual assault survivor, faces possible expulsion for “intimidating” her alleged abuser.
Gambill was part of a group that filed a federal complaint against UNC over the way the institution treats sexual assault victims. Though Gambill has never publicly identified her abuser, other than to say he’s an ex-boyfriend and a current UNC student, her alleged attacker filed an Honor Court charge against her last week.
The American Association of University Professors’ Committee on Women stood by Gambill and urged the university to drop the charges in a letter to UNC-Chapel Hill Chancellor Holden Thorp.
“Charging a plaintiff in a sexual assault case with an Honor Court violation appears very much like retaliation for raising the issue of sexual assault,” wrote professors Ann Green and Donna Potts, of St. Joseph’s University and Kansas State University, respectively. “Such action by UNC can only serve to silence survivors of sexual violence and to contribute to the chilly campus climate delineated by the recent ‘Dear Colleague’ letter issued by the Office for Civil Rights of the Department of Education.”
The university has insisted it has nothing to do with the Honor Code charge, but the AAUP noted the administration does have oversight of the Honor Court system. Indeed, the Committee on Student Conduct, comprised of students, faculty and administrators, “oversees the implementation of the Honor Code and the workings of the Honor System at UNC,” according to its website….
February 20, 2013 Comments Off on Discovery of father’s Scout abuse file triggers memories, Rape Is Rape, Wrong Is Wrong
Discovery of father’s Scout abuse file triggers memories, what ifs for brother and sister
February 17, 2013 Associated Press
On opposite sides of the world, the brother and sister sat transfixed before their computers, reading a stranger’s account of long-ago secrets and deeply buried sins.
The memo was just four pages long, about an incident in 1963 at a Boy Scout camp in New Jersey. A Scout executive had gotten drunk during an overnight outing, then was discovered gambling with a group of boys. But there was more.
The brother and sister read on — about how this man “was observed molesting an Explorer Scout sitting at his side.” About how he was admitted, voluntarily, to a mental hospital. They read about an investigation that determined he had tried to molest another Scout. It found that this man’s “problem,” as the document called it, had apparently existed for decades.
They read, too, about a call from this local Boy Scouts council for “suppression of spread of incident beyond group with knowledge of it.” ”We know enough to advise that Brandon P. Gray should never again be registered in any capacity with the Boy Scouts of America,” the memo stated….
According to his file, Gray started drinking on Feb. 2, 1963, at the Scouts’ Mt. Allamuchy camp in Stanhope, N.J., during the annual Klondike Derby, an event in which Scouts pull sleds. That evening, he was discovered playing cards for cash in a cabin with several Explorer Scouts, in violation of camp policy.
Gray, the file said, “was observed molesting” one of those Scouts, whose age wasn’t mentioned. An adult in the room moved the boy away from Gray, but took no further action “in an effort to avoid a ‘scene,'” the record stated. Gray continued to drink, grew agitated and attempted to hit someone. Adult Scouts then subdued him and eventually he fell asleep.
By the next morning, Gray’s wife, Ruth, had been contacted and Gray admitted himself to a mental hospital. The Scouts then met with the Explorer, who confirmed “the violation.” Upon his release from the hospital, Gray was terminated. No records identified by The Associated Press show any charges or convictions for Gray in connection with the incident or any other charges for sex abuse….
After his dismissal on Feb. 7, 1963, Gray went home to his family. Carol was 12 years old. Jim was only 7.
Old memories can flicker and fade. But for Carol and Jim, some memories simply aren’t there, an abyss they say protects them from remembering some of the worst of their abuse.
Carol believes hers began when she was 5 years old. Years of psychiatric help and attempts to recover memories haven’t yielded much more. But a fact from her past lingers: “I believe that mine stopped when Dad started abusing my brother.”
Brandon Gray’s removal from Scouting was, his son said, the beginning of a decade of sexual abuse. It began soon after that February day in 1963 and continued until Jim graduated high school and joined the U.S. Marines Corps.
Unlike Carol, Jim has little trouble remembering. His father would stalk up the stairs and push his way into Jim’s room. Once, when Jim was about 11 years old, his mother walked in to find him and his father engaged in a sexual act. She turned and walked out. A day later, she moved Jim’s entire bedroom upstairs, the posters in the same place they had been in his old room, the bed in the same spot.
It was, he said, his mother’s attempt at physically shunting off the problem she could no longer deny….
“The worst thing about the sexual abuse, mental health problems, alcoholism and all that … are the losses,” said Jim, 58. “The loss of being able to maintain healthy relationships, intimacy, having children. These things that most people take for granted, I won’t have those.
“By the time I recovered, it was too late to do those things.”….
Jim contacted The Associated Press after the files were released in mid-October. He did so because he said he wants to show that victims of sex abuse can, with a lot of work, live full lives. He believes that he and his sister are proof of that.
He also wants to show the real consequences of the Scouts’ inaction….
He still struggles with the memories of his abuse.
“Am I healed? I wish that were possible,” he said. “Like a person who has lost an arm or a leg, I have learned to adapt. I do not think I will ever be healed. I can say that I am happy more than I am sad.”
Rape Is Rape, Wrong Is Wrong, Where Is Decency?
02/19/2013 Stuart Muszynski
From the public outrage over the oxymoronic statements of this past election cycle about “legitimate rape” and “violent rape,” we learned, thankfully, that most Americans agree that rape of any kind is wrong. However, if you’re following the sordid story of the Steubenville High School “Big Red” football players who were charged with raping a 16-year-old girl from West Virginia, you see how the cruelty, immorality and true violent nature of rape is defended, diminished and deflected.
The allegations are that last August, two high school football players raped the girl, then dragged her unconscious from party to party while many people looked on and did nothing. Multiple cell phones recorded the events, and later onlookers posted the videos on the Internet. The video footage showed a naked girl, out cold, along with other football players laughingly boasting that “She’s dead” and “I’m going to join the rape crew.”
Clearly they knew what was happening, but they were caught up in the moment with their buddies. Some team members and their friends stood by and did nothing while others encouraged the rape or actively took part in it.
That’s bad enough, but what occurred next, after the girl’s parents reported the rape to the police, is just as shocking.
Big Red Football Coach Reno Saccoccia suspended the two players who allegedly raped the victim, but didn’t suspend any of the players who live-tweeted the attack while it was happening or joked about it afterward. The coach’s reason was that the boys said that that they didn’t think they had done anything wrong….
Consider the following statistics:….One third of high school girls will be involved in dating violence. Twenty percent of teens will be sexually assaulted.
While schools are trying to address bullying, they are not addressing decency, goodness, kindness or respect. Ultimately, not doing so has a cultural impact on both community and country.
Almost fifty years ago, in March, 1964, 38 people watched from their New York City apartments as Kitty Genovese was raped and then killed. Thirty years later, dozens of motorists on a Detroit bridge watched as a woman who, beaten during a road rage incident, jumped off the bridge to her death to avoid her assailant. Bystanders just sat in their cars.
When addressing rape, gun violence, bullying and other types of violent behavior, our country must depend on good people who recognize evil and do the right thing by standing up to help. To ensure decency, we have no choice but to rely on our schools because some parents just are not doing their jobs.
Anna Sewell, a British novelist who wrote Black Beauty, said, “If we see cruelty or wrong that we have the power to stop and do nothing, we make ourselves share in the guilt.”….
October 7, 2012 Comments Off on Military Sexual Assault Epidemic Continues To Claim Victims As Defense Department Fails Females
Military Sexual Assault Epidemic Continues To Claim Victims As Defense Department Fails Females
Molly O’Toole 10/06/2012
….Active-duty female personnel make up roughly 14.5 percent — or 207,308 members — of the more than 1.4 million Armed Forces, according to the Department of Defense.
One in three military women has been sexually assaulted, compared to one in six civilian women, according to Defense. According to calculations by The Huffington Post, a servicewoman was nearly 180 times more likely to have become a victim of military sexual assault (MSA) in the past year than to have died while deployed during the last 11 years of combat in Iraq and Afghanistan.
According to the most recent report by the Pentagon’s Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Office, 3,192 sexual assaults were reported out of an estimated 19,000 — roughly 52 a day — between Oct. 1, 2010, to Sept. 31, 2011. The department estimates that only roughly 14 percent of the assaults were reported. The majority of sexual assaults each year are committed against service members by service members, SAPRO reports. While MSA does not affect only women, the office characterizes the “vast majority” of victims as female junior enlists under the age of 25, and the “vast majority” of perpetrators as male, older (under the age of 35) and generally higher-ranking.
….The Department also counts as a small victory the increased use of courts-martial charges over the past five years and less reliance on nonjudicial punishments. But this increase only represents the courts martial charges that were initiated. By the end of FY2011, only 240 of the original 3,192 reported crimes had made it to trial. Just under 6 percent of the total reports resulted in a conviction by courts martial. According to SAPRO’s latest report, “most” of the people convicted in FY2011 were reduced in rank or placed into confinement, but fines were more common than discharges. But the punitive measures the military is handing down may not mitigate the risks: Repeat offenders, according to the report, commit 90 percent of all assaults.
The now-benighted concept of “don’t ask, don’t tell” still holds true in the case of military sexual assault: Due to a climate of impunity and retaliation, many survivors suffer in silence.
Panetta’s refrain for years has been heartening: “One sexual assault is too many.”
To which Havrilla responds, “This whole concept of ‘zero tolerance,’ it’s just words and no action.”
“You can’t leave. You can’t quit. You can’t walk away.”