Wednesday, 20 January 2010

Well, How Were We Supposed To Know She Was A Fruitcake?

An innocent man who was arrested after a woman he had never met made a false rape allegation spoke of his continuing ordeal after she was jailed yesterday.
They are just coming thick and fast, now, and so early into 2010, too…
Rosanne England, 21, tore her underwear, scratched her own face and then told police she had been attacked by a stranger who knocked on her door.
And they swung into action, analysing the evidence and…

*sigh* Of course they didn’t. That only happens in the movies…
Retired engineer Derek Cummings matched the description of her 'attacker' and had no alibi because he had been walking his dog in woods alone at the time England said she was raped in May last year.
Just fantastic!

Never mind ‘round up the usual suspects’, now it’s ‘round up the closest men’…
He was arrested and detained for 28 hours before being released on bail.
And had his name bandied about the media, and his DNA taken, and…
After 24 days England finally admitted the allegation was untrue and Mr Cummings, 59, was exonerated.
Except in the court of public opinion, that is…
However after England was jailed for 18 months yesterday, Mr Cummings said he still had trouble from people around his home in Fawley, Hampshire, who wrongly believe 'there is no smoke without fire'. He said he could not go into certain pubs.
He’s remarkably sanguine about it, too:
'I do not blame the police - they had to do a job. They were heavy-handed with me initially but they realised I was innocent and I knew DNA tests would clear me.'
They did indeed have a job to do, but that job entailed charging a suspect after gathering evidence, not simply going out and finding the nearest person with the right set of genitals and no alibi.

Still, who cares? The taxpayer’s paying, after all:
Winchester Crown Court heard that 73 staff were involved in the investigation and the costs of forensic work and overtime alone totalled £14,000.
And this deranged cow should be landed with the full bill.

But JuliaM, people will say, that’s unfair! The police aren’t to know that she was lying, were they?

Ah, well…
England, a former care worker who suffered from mental health problems, admitted perverting the course of justice at an earlier hearing and the court was told she was remorseful for the trouble she had caused.
Now, I’m not saying that people with ‘mental health issues’ should be automatically discounted from rape investigations. Far from it.

But it doesn’t take Sherlock Holmes to think that they should be investigated with a lot more caution, and that the police should be discouraged from rounding up the nearest poor sod who hasn’t got a priest, a doctor and a lawyer to certify where he was on a given date and saying ‘Job done, the courts’ll sort it out if we’re wrong’…

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