Knowledge Exchange 2017 – Sexual Assault: Statistics and the Law


Kathy AuCoin: Are we up? Okay. Good morning. And I want to reiterate the Minister’s comments
about how important this event is and how well organized it is, and the agenda looks
brilliant. So kudos to everyone on the team. It looks wonderful. I’m going to spend 10, 15 minutes going
over and presenting the most current data we have on sexual assaults from Statistics
Canada, drawing on different data sources. I’m going to give the presentation in English. However, if you have any questions in French,
no problem. I sometimes break the rules of grammar. I’m sorry, but that’s reality for me. So again, preamble. I try with all my heart. And I also try to make sure I do this correctly. So here’s a test. I did it right. Okay. These are technical issues, it makes me feel
calmer that I can control the clicker. (laughter) So there’s three key messages
that I think everybody needs to leave this room with. Many of these messages you will not find surprising,
but let’s reiterate it so that we’re all on the same page. Over the past several decades, the overall
crime rate in Canada has gone down for both violent and non-violent crime. However, sexual assault rates, not so. In fact, in the most recent 2014 GSS for the
first time in the cycle of that survey, women’s rates of violent victimization were higher
than men. An important thing to consider. There are certain groups of Canadians that
are more at risk: women, women between the ages of 15 and 24, aboriginal women whose
rates of victimization sexual assault are three times greater than non-aboriginal women. In addition, we also know children who had
been victimized before the age of 15 are also at greater risk of being a victim of a sexual
assault as an adult. Overall, we know that reporting that reporting
to police for sexual assault victims has not changed over time. Very few report, and this has been consistent
over many years. It’s not a new phenomena, it’s been ongoing
and it hasn’t changed. Again, see, I have trust issues. There we go. (laughter) Okay, I would like to spend just
a minute talking about the different databases that we use to look at sexual assault. The first one is the General Social Survey
on Victimization, which is critical when we’re looking at crimes that aren’t reported to
police. This data set we call or do personal interviews
with Canadians asking about their pre-, their experiences of victimization over the previous
12 months. It’s important for us to get at this information
so we understand what’s reported, what’s not reported. Further to that, we can get information about
who the perpetrator was, impacts and consequences, PTSD, a wealth of information that helps get
at information we can’t get at, with police data. The GSS is also critical in getting information
on spousal violence, dating violence as well as child maltreatment statistics, which again
are all types of crime that do not get reported to the police. A second critical data point is police reported
data. We get this information on an annual basis. The data that we collect and that we publish
is founded incidents. Founded incidents are when the police establish
that a law has been broken. A report is extracted and given to Stats Canada
and we go through several months of cleaning, verifying, processing the data to come up
with reliable statistics. We collect data on 200 criminal offenses. So over time, we can look at changes for different
crime types, violent versus non, by region, by CNA. So it is a wealth of information. Another critical data point is criminal court
survey data and here we can look at how sexual assault cases are handled through the court
process. However, there is some limit in that we don’t
get a lot of information about the victim from that data set. However, within Statistics Canada now, we’re
doing a lot of work linking different data sets so that we can get at more information
that we couldn’t do so in the past. So next one. Great. So what does the GSS measure and, I mean,
Carole went through the law, Criminal Code for sexual assault. When we talk to Canadians, we don’t use
were you a victim of sexual assault level one? Canadians wouldn’t understand it. There are three very specific questions we
ask Canadians. Over the past 12 months, did you experience
unwanted sexual touching? That is has anyone ever touched you against
your will in any sexual way? By this, I mean anything from unwanted touching
or grabbing to kissing or fondling. Has anyone forced you or attempted to force
you into any unwanted sexual activity by threatening you, holding you down or hurting you in some
way? And then the last category sexual activity
where the person was unable to consent, which was added in 2014. Has anyone subjected you to a sexual activity
which you were not able to consent? Were you drugged, intoxicated, manipulated
or forced in ways other than physicality? Now, all of these items meet the criminal
threshold of a sexual assault and this is how we capture the information. Twelve months for the general population. If someone was in a spousal relationship or
had contact with their ex-spouse, be it common-law or legal married, we would ask in the previous
five years whether they’d ever experienced this at the hands of a spouse. So here are some key statistics that I think
are important to focus on. We know that men, well, women are more likely
to be a victim of a violent, a sexual assault, and specifically 550,000 incidents in 2014,
a significantly larger amount than the 80,000 reported by men. When we take that number and put it into a
rate, for women, that’s 37 incidents per 1,000. So I know people are challenged mathematically,
but if you think of it in, if there’s 200 women in this room, that would mean seven
perhaps were a victim of a sexual assault in the previous 12 months. If there were 200 aboriginal women, that number
would jump to 22. So perhaps being a victim of one of those
sexual assaults in the previous 12 months, 22 individuals of 200. It’s a large number. And when we put it in a rate, sometimes it
hides it. So we need to conceptualize what the rate
means in a room full of people. It gives it more of a tangible entity. When we look at specific regions in Canada,
the Territories have higher rates of sexual assault, as do the western provinces, specifically
Manitoba and Saskatchewan. In 2015, the total number of all sexual assaults
reported by police as founded and that were cleared by charge was just over 9,000, or
about 43% of the sexual assault incidents. Victims of violence turn to others for support,
specifically 14% of violent crime victims contacted at least one source, most often
a social worker or a psychologist. We know that women are more likely than males
to reach out for support services. Some Justice Canada studies looked at reasons
for not reporting child maltreatment and frequent response was that the individual felt that
they would not be believed. They felt ashamed or embarrassed. In the most recent GSS, we asked respondents
retrospectively whether they’d been a victim or child maltreatment and whether that incident
ever was reported to the authorities or the police. Ninety-three percent of adults who said they
had been victimized prior to the age of 15 said it was never brought to the attention
of any type of authority, be it child protective services or the police. So a very important data element is trend. Are things getting better, staying the same,
going up or down? When we look at the blue line, which is the,
at the top, those are rates from the sexual assault data points from the GSS, so this
is whether it’s reported or not to police. And what we can clearly see is things have
not changed. Over the past decade, the rate has stayed
the same. What’s not on the slide is the rates for
both robbery and physical assault that are captured through the GSS. And over the past 10 years, both rates have
gone down significantly. For robbery, the decrease has been 39% over
the past decade, while physical assault, it was decreased by 35%. And again, this is when sexual assault has
stayed stable. This is the reason why currently women have
higher rates of victimization, according to the GSS, because of the stability of the sexual
assault. The orange trend line reflects data from police
services but again, we know that many victims of sexual assault do not report to police,
so this is an underestimation of the actual number. Again, in 2014, as the Minister already has
spoken to, the large majority of victims of sexual assault never reported to the authorities. On this slide, I want to focus your attention
on reporting rates. Again, the data’s from the GSS and looking
at sexual assault reporting rates to police versus robbery, as well as physical assault. So 38% of victims of physical assault reported
to police whereas 54% — I want to make sure I get this right – 34% of physical violence
victims reported to police, 54% of victims of robbery and then for sexual assaults, only
5%. Again, as I reiterated, mentioned at the beginning,
these proportions of people reporting to police haven’t changed. It also hasn’t changed over time for victims
of robbery or physical assault. So there’s something else going on, overall. What are the reasons for reporting or not
reporting? There’s many. For sexual assault victims, 7 in 10 felt that
the crime wasn’t important enough or felt that it was a personal matter and that they
would manage it informally on their own. However, it’s important to note that 4 in
10 stated that they felt the police would not have considered the incident important
enough, felt that there was a lack of evidence or believed that the offender would not be
convicted or adequately punished. What’s not on this slide are some other
data points that I think are important. Victims of sexual assault who choose, chose
not to report were three times more likely than physical assault victims who chose not
to report to state that they felt, they were concerned that others would find out about
their victimization. So this was the biggest concern, that it would
get out there. In addition, they were twice as likely as
victims of a physical assault to say they didn’t want to bring shame to their family. So this was a critical barrier for many victims
of sexual assault. So this next slide focuses on the fact that
though victims of sexual assault might not be reporting to the police, they are reaching
out. They’re reaching out to victims services,
seeking help. This slide shows the total number of victim
seeking services from different victim services across Canada on snapshot day. And on that day, just under 11,000 people
went through different victim services. What’s important to note is a quarter of
them, or more than a quarter were there because of a sexual assault. And in fact, 3 in 10 women were because of
a sexual assault issue. So they are finding help through different
vehicles. Again, this slide I wanted to point out again,
looking at the rates, and this is from police data, which regions in Canada have the highest
rates of sexual assault. Again, the three territories as well as the
western provinces of Manitoba and Saskatchewan. Okay, this is a blank slide. And I’m going to take a bit of time to walk
you through this. This is some preliminary results for a study
that’s going to come out hopefully the end of spring, early summer. As I mentioned at the very outset, it’s
really difficult for us to follow an incident or an offender through police to court to
the correctional system. The Canadian data systems are not integrated. They don’t flow in a nice, really easy data
mining way. It’s just not like that. So in order for us to understand how sexual
assault cases versus physical assault cases are being treated in police to courts, we
need to merge large data sets to get at this type of information. So this is a unique research project that
we’ve been working on for about six to eight months. And it’s very timely. What we did is we took six years of police
records and linked them to court data. And what we, the main research question was
what was the drop-off rate, the attrition rate for both physical assaults as well as
sexual assaults. We wanted to compare sexual assaults with
something else. So we have information to figure through. So I’m going to walk through six numbers
slowly so that I don’t freak you out with too many numbers. There’s no math test. Okay, in the six years of data, what we found
that there were approximately 94,000 sexual assaults reported by police in Canada as founded. A law had been broken. Over the same time period, there was approximately
940,000 physical assaults reported by police as founded. A law had been broken. So then the next question is how many of these
resulted in a charge being laid? Now, police will lay a charge when they’ve
got an accused. They can’t lay a charge if they can’t
find the accused. So often, the number’s going to get dropped
down because also police have discretionary prerogative, diversionary programs, the accused
could have died. There are many reasons why charges might not
have been laid. So the next number will be smaller. So of the 94,000 sexual assaults, 40,000 resulted
in a charge being laid. That’s about 4 in 10, 42%. When we look at physical assaults, 450,000
of those incidents resulted in a charge being laid. That’s about 48%, a larger proportion, 6-7%
difference. So the next step is okay, how can we find
these people in the court data? So they’ve been charged, where are they
in the court data? So now we have five years of court data that
we link to the police records. What we found in the court data was that there
was 19,000 of those 40,000 in the court data. And I want to make sure I’m getting the
number right, so I’m taking my time. So that’s just about 50%. So 50% of those sexual assault incidents where
there was a charge laid we found in the court data. When we compare it to the physical assault,
is it up there, 75%. So there’s the biggest change. So again, amongst the sexual assault cases,
when we found them in the court records, it was just around 50%. For physical assault, it was 75%. So the next number is the attrition rate. And the attrition rate means the dropout. So we take the total number that we started
with and how much is left. So the drop-off rate for sexual assaults was
79%. For the physical assault, it was 64%. So again, this is preliminary results. We’re still working on the paper and there’s
still many questions we’re still going to look at. We haven’t finished crunching all the numbers. The next steps of the study are to analyse
the court outcomes of these cases. That is what proportion had a guilty verdict,
what were the sentencing outcomes, again between sexual assault and physical assault to give,
you know, compared contrast, and to look at the final attrition rate. This next slide are footnotes, because we
haven’t published it, but you don’t have to read through those. (laughter) Due diligence. It can’t be us without footnotes. This last slide is, I’ll spend, like, 30
seconds. The most current data from 2014-15 looking
at a flow chart for court case outcomes from adult criminal court where the charge with
the most serious decision was related to a sexual assault. So in the top left-hand corner, you’ll see
that there was 2,500 completed cases where the most serious decision was related to sexual
assault. Of these, just over 4 in 10 resulted in a
guilty, guilty finding, while a similar proportion were stayed or withdrawn. Where there was a finding of guilt for sexual
assault in the case, almost 6 in 10 accused were sentenced to custody while 18% were sentenced
to probation. Overall, the mean length of custody was 255
days. It’s important to note that’s probably
an underestimation because we can’t control for remand. We do not know how much time the person was
held in remand. So that is an underestimation. Finally, on the, at the very bottom of the
slide, I’d like to draw your attention to that long black line. Overall, from the first court appearance to
the final decision, it took about 11 months or 310 days. And that’s it. Thank you for your time. Gillian Blackell: Thank you very much. (inaudible – technical difficulties) informative,
it’s exciting, exciting news about the study that you’re doing. We will, I just would like to give you a token
of our appreciation and I really mean, it’s a token. (laughter) Budget cuts, you know. So thank you. So, we’ll start with the next expert panel
right away because we have quite a busy day. In the meantime, if you need headphones, if
you need some headphones, please get those because as I mentioned earlier, there will
be presentations in both languages. And I’m inviting the speakers for the second
panel to come up. There are a few spots available up front here
if you were looking for a seat. There’s room up front. There are a few, I see a few empty seats for
those of you looking for a seat. Moderator: Okay, I’m sorry, we don’t have
a lot of time for pauses. We have so many wonderful people here, and
I’m sure we’re going to want to hear as much as they have to share with us. It’s, it’s quite an exciting day to have
all these people here. And both people at the front and in the room
taking home ideas and working, continuing your valuable work on these issues. Our panel today is on sexual assault reporting
and investigation, which is very timely given the attention that these issues have been
receiving. We will be talking about barriers to reporting,
available supports for survivors and promising practices related to reporting and police
investigations. And I really don’t want to take away from
time from the panelists today. So I’m going to leave it to you to read
all of the amazing things that they’ve done that’s described in their bios in the package
you’ve received. And just really briefly introduce the members
of the panel. We have Holly Johnson, a professor from the
Faculty of Criminology at the University of Ottawa and we’re going to go in order from
right, my right towards me and that’s the order on your agenda as well. We have Jennifer Richard , the Director of
Community Development, from the Fredericton Sexual Assault Centre. Next to her is Chief Shawn Devine, the Chief
of the North Bay Police Service. And then, we have two members from the Philadelphia
model that we’ve all heard so much about, and we’re very excited and grateful that
they were able to come here. We have Terry Fromson, the Managing Attorney
of the Women’s Law Project in Philadelphia, and Lieutenant Thomas McDevitt from, Retired
Lieutenant from the Special Victims Unit at the Philadelphia Police Service. So, we’re going to start with each panelist
speaking for approximately 10 minutes and then we will have some time for questions
at the end. … Okay, so I won’t dwell on this because the
Minister has alluded to it and so did Kathy, but we know that the justice system has largely
been a failure for women who are sexually assaulted, that despite decades of law reform
and some very, very important changes to law and procedure, the charging rate has not improved
and nor has the conviction rate for women and we know from the very timely and very
comprehensive investigative reporting by the Globe and Mail that this first line, which
is recorded by the police, are, omits a very large number and that varies tremendous across
the country. This is Ontario for, which is where I work. And more specifically, in Ottawa, charges
were laid in 19% of cases over a five-year period and 38% were deemed to be unfounded
and 32% were founded, not solved, and 10% were dismissed for other discretionary reasons
or the complainant’s request. So under some encouragement, shall we say,
from the local community in 2013, the Ottawa Police Service began examining unfounded cases
more carefully and in that year, sexual assaults quoted as unfounded dropped by half while
the unfounded, sorry, the founded not solved rate rose to 47%. The percentage resulting in charges did not
change. And The Globe and Mail story found that in
2014, that unfounded dropped to 12%, and according to the OPS, it’s now at 8%. And while accurate recording of data is critical
to addressing this problem, without real change on the ground, that you know, we, it’s,
statistics can be used to meet an objective and we don’t know without oversight whether
there’s been any change on the ground. The Ottawa Police, some years ago, started
a very important initiative to improve their response to crimes of violence against women,
and they started an advisory committee which is still continuing to this day, and I’ve
been able to be a part of that committee and as part of our work, we conducted a small
survey of women in Ottawa who had reported crimes of violence to the police, and 219
women came forward. And only 36% of them had reported a sexual
assault, which is not surprising to me, given that it’s a very, very unreported crime,
as we know. So we collected some statistical and some
qualitative data, and because the numbers are quite low for sexual, I focus more on
the women’s voices and what the apprehensions and contradictions have been for them as they
came forward to report sexual violence. So first of all, just an overview as a few
statistics based on small numbers about how the women, about their impressions of the
first officer and the investigator. And we can see that the percentages are low
who gave favourable ratings about being, feeling comfortable talking with the officer, being
believed, feeling the officer was considerate of her feelings and opinions, and an overall
good or satisfactory rating, and then we had a couple of extra questions about investigators,
about explaining the process and answering questions. And we can see that it’s below 50%, or 50%
or below for all of them, and it’s somewhat higher for investigators. So let’s start with why do women report? We know about why they don’t report. We had some pretty good comprehensive information
about that, about their fear of the justice system, about their shame and embarrassment
and sometimes the fear of the offender. What happens to women when they actually do
report? Well, most of them report to protect other
women, or they want the guy held accountable and told that his actions are wrong. They want validation for what has happened
to them. So to illustrate mixed feelings, and mixed
outcomes, this is a quotation from a university student assaulted by an acquaintance at age
18 who was, we asked him [sic] about were you, how did you feel about involving the
police and this woman was, really wanted the police to be involved, and the first officer
was non-judgemental and told her “it would be okay, it’s okay to feel scared and everything
would be alright”. He offered to call a support person, offered
to get medical assistance and the woman didn’t push for charges to be laid, fearing her community
would judge her, and that her attacker would “get her into, get into trouble”. However, the implication of her decision not
to pursue a prosecution was that she fabricated the assault. And here is her narrative: “I was so afraid
of my attacker would tell people how the entire ordeal would be painted to make me look like
a liar, that I let this issue pass without pressing charges. Directly following the incident, his friends
began Facebook inbox messaging me, telling me I was a liar and how could I accuse their
innocent friend of such a heinous crime. I was young, frightened and felt trapped. I wish the police could have given me some
tools to avoid this mental coercion.” She goes on to say “Looking back, I wish he
had some consequences for what he did to me. I suffered major emotional and psychological
trauma from the incident and he walked away as if it never happened. Furthermore, he turned around and tarnished
my reputation among our mutual friends by telling everyone I had lied about the whole
thing. He continued to frequent the residence I lived
in for the next several months and continues to make me fear running into him. I wish the decision to charge him had been
out of my hands so I wouldn’t have had to fear the judgement from my community, which
is why I did not end up pressing charges because I do feel he deserved the charges.” And so she’s quite conflicted about do I
report and do I put myself out there? And now, she’s seemed to be a liar. Now, in this report, or in this analysis,
what we found is three major themes emerging. And the first one you’re not going to be
surprised to learn was disbelief and skepticism. And so the initial response is really critical
for establishing trust and helping the woman define assault as either a crime or something
for which she’s responsible and for herself is either deserving of the protection of the
law or is blameworthy. And there are several examples where the police
dismissed the women’s claim outright and judged her credibility on the basis of rape
myths and a narrow definition of so-called real rape. So this woman describes her treatment by the
officer who interviewed her as traumatizing. And a prior sexual assault in another city
had resulted in a conviction. She was optimistic police would treat her
fairly and with respect, but her faith in the police was shattered when he accused her
of exaggerating, told her he used the word rape too liberally and a friend and a bystander
called numerous times before police responded and they reluctantly interviewed the assailant
and told her he interpreted my body language wrong and thought he was “laying the smooth
moves”. And I’ve been given a two-minute warning. Uh-oh. Okay, so let me just, we know about disbelief
and skepticism, and there are a number of examples there. The effects of trauma. We’re only just starting to understand and
we’re going to hear quite a lot about the effects of trauma later on and what it does
to the brain, and how cumulative traumas from, left over from childhood sexual abuse can
really have an effect, and police have to respond to that and understand that a past
complaint of sexual assault doesn’t then contribute to believe this woman is fabricating
this time. This is just a story about, a narrative from
a woman who had flashbacks, had a very supportive police officer that was unable to actually
proceed because of past trauma. The third theme we found was procedural justice
and, of course, disbelief and effects of trauma all converge on procedural justice, but there
are some, some easy to fix and some not so easy to fix things that can be done to meet
procedural justice, which is all feeling valued and respected and having some basic courtesies,
such as demanding details of the assault at the front desk, being left alone with male
officers, etc., no validation for the wrongfulness of the act. Just to end then quickly on what’s a positive
response, there, here’s an example of where procedural justice can really be important
for helping women prepare for a trial. He got somebody to cover at the front desk
for him, he took me and a friend I brought along to another room so there would be privacy. He got me Kleenex and water and listened and
made notes, let me take the other sheet of paper home. I was referred to a detective. She continues to be absolutely amazing. So this was a woman who was sexually assaulted
by her father. There were seven charges laid. There was a conviction in five, so she had
validation through the court process. When asked whether she would report similar
crimes in the future, she said I don’t think. I was in court for three years, and it was
traumatizing and I had to take time off work. And so the good reaction or response from
the police can actually be outdone by a lengthy grueling court process. And my time is up. Thank you. Moderator: Thank you very much, Holly. Next we have Jennifer Richard, talking a bit
about the wonderful work that they’ve done and built up and supporting survivors. Jennifer Richard: Hi there. So I am going to talk a little bit about our
centre and our approach to sexual violence and then talk a little bit about training
that we developed, trauma informed police training that we have piloted last year, and
a little bit about our relationship with the police, which I suspect is probably fairly
similar to a lot of sexual assault centres in our history relating to the police. So just a little snapshot of our, the Fredericton
Sexual Assault Centre, which I will now only refer to as FSAC cause it’s a lot easier. So Fredericton has the dubious distinction
of being one of the top municipalities in terms of reported sexual assaults. We tend to fight for first place with St.
John. And New Brunswick is also one of the – as
The Globe and Mail article came out – is at the top also for unfounded cases. So New Brunswick is leading the pack once
again. So Fredericton is kind of a little bit like
a mini Ottawa. We have, it is a pretty diverse community. We have two universities, we have three indigenous
communities that surround the municipality. We have a growing immigrant population and
we also have, like most cities in New Brunswick, a Francophone and Anglophone population. And the main employer in Fredericton is either
the university or, or government. And so, again like the, like the article The
Globe and Mail came out, there’s definitely some issues in New Brunswick. St. John is, is number for unfounded, unfounded
cases. Fredericton was only 16%, which was great,
but our charging rates in Fredericton are about 10%, which means 90% of the people who
come forward to report sexual assault, nothing happens. So that’s, there’s definitely some interesting
– Holly, you should just come into New Brunswick and do a study, that would be fantastic. So the centre, we’ve been around for about
40 years, and like most sexual assault centres in the country, really was a grassroots movement
as a response to violence against women. We are the only centre in New Brunswick. We do provide local services to Fredericton,
but we provide a lot of other mentoring, supporting, resources to the whole province. So things like community development, we do
a lot of training throughout the province. We also work with the provincial government
to, to help them develop policies and, and work with the different departments within
government. We are a small centre. We have four full-time permanent staff. We have two temporary project staff, three
part-time counsellors. Really important to know that probably, like
some other centres, we don’t have any core funding. We are a make it work type of organization. We rely mostly on a lot of project funding. We do have an ongoing relationship with the
province of New Brunswick, but it is, you know, in three-year snippets. And we also rely on United Way funding and,
and of course, fundraising. But for our direct services like individual
counselling, our support line, there really isn’t any full funding for that, which is
important to know because this issue is something that is coming out more and more, so the increase
in our services has been massive and, and it is hard to actually meet those, meet those
needs. So in terms of our response, we are pretty
well respected in the province. We have been there for 40 years. Our executive director has been in her position
for about 30 years, so we’re, we have some really strong relationships. And so in, in 2012, we started to develop
a sexual assault response team, which officially launched in 2015. It took a while to develop those relationships
and actually get buy-in from the head people in all of the different agencies that we were
working with. So the team is made up of, obviously ourselves,
the police – we have municipal and RCMP in the area – so with the Fredericton police
force and the RCMP, victim services, the campuses, domestic violence outreach workers, and the
sexual assault nurse examiners. And so we meet every two months to talk about
emerging issues to troubleshoot things that are happening, and talking about successes
is actually really important, as well as challenges. And it’s a good way for us to bring some
of the issues that we hear about through our counselling program at our support line up
to the frontline workers and the agencies that are actually responding to those. So last year, we started – or a couple of
years ago actually – we received funding from Status of Women Canada to develop trauma
informed police training, which was called Improving outcomes trauma informed sexual
assault response training for police. So this was, this was an initiative with our
Sexual Assault response team, as well as the Atlantic Network of Sexual Assault Centres
who would help give us input with this as well. So we worked with the Fredericton Police Force
to develop those agenda topics, discuss best practices. And so the ultimate objective which I will
read because it is lengthy, is to strengthen to capacity of law enforcement to provide
trauma informed sexual violence specific, sexual violence specific is also important,
and victim centred police response and investigation to adult sexual assault cases that reflect
a deepened understanding of the impact of investigational practices on traumatized victims
of sexual assault while maintaining balanced and objective police investigations within
the context of the criminal justice system. So just a little objective. We had one day to do it, so it was challenging. So we delivered the pilot to a group in the
spring of 2016 to the Fredericton Police Force, so we had about, our initial group was small,
about eight, about eight officers. So like I said, the training was delivered
in one day. The agenda included things like myths and
misconceptions, victims’ perspective in reporting sexual assault, understanding the
neurobiology of trauma and trauma informed sexual assault police response, the initial
response and victim interviewing and talking about things like rethinking resistance and
what that looks like, not necessarily physical resistance, but what are the other things
that indicate resistance? And then report writing, which was actually
a very interesting piece that we, we use a lot of information from the Avalon Centre
in Halifax about how powerful that report writing and the words that you choose can
really have consequences down the road. We did provide it again. We offered it to the province. The demand, the need, the excitement about
this was, far exceeded our expectations. So that group, we had about 80 people. It was mostly officers, but there was also
people from victims services and other agencies in the province. We were really careful to take an approach
that wasn’t critical but really about exchanging knowledge with the officers because as people
from the Sexual Assault Centre, we weren’t going to go in and say you’re doing things
wrong. This is how you should be doing it, because
we knew that wasn’t going to go over very well. So we really tried to say this is what the
best practices are. Maybe you could think about that. So we did evaluate it, and of course, it was
evaluated well. There were really good outcomes that we found
from that . There were a couple of challenges I wanted to mention through this process. One day was nowhere near enough time to do
this type of training. You need to build trust. The issue of false reports is still a very
contentious issue. We, it was difficult to come to an agreement. We still have a lot of work with advocacy
and with police to really have a good understanding of what the police realities are in terms
of false reports, but also what are the real realities of false reports. (laughter) And actually being able to talk
about this in a really safe way. So we actually avoided, we just decided we
have a day, we’re not going to talk about that cause we may get way off topic. The other thing that we met some resistance
was bringing the idea of suspect focused investigations to their practice. Still a little uncomfortable with that. And it really is related to a culture of suspicion,
I believe, that exists within not only policing, but within the whole criminal justice system. So just to wrap up quickly about our relationship
with the police, it hasn’t always been great, but I would say in the last 10 years, there’s
been a huge shift of us working not only with the policing institution, but with even larger
institutions in our province. There is a lot more visibility of sexual violence
in the media, and so that really has contributed to people now coming to us and saying we want
to work with you. We want to use your expertise. We, we’re lucky right now to have a really
excellent Chief in Fredericton, Leanne Fitch. She’s been really supportive of the work
and of the training itself that we developed, and she has committed to furthering, obviously
it was, it was a project so we don’t really have any money anymore, but she really wants
to bring this training to all of her officers. And so New Brunswick departments will be reviewing
the cases through the Department of Justice and Public Safety and Chief Fitch has asked
us to, to be part of that process, which is really fantastic, but that’s not the case
in all other municipalities in New Brunswick. And our, our goal is really to develop a more
strategic approach to improving police response. Looking at training but also looking at policies
and procedures and practices. And like the Minister said, we are going to
be developing a similar training for Crowns and judges that we’ll be doing over the
next three years, which is really exciting. And so we do recognize that there are many
issues in the justice system, and it can sometimes be really difficult as a sexual assault centre
to feel like we’re making any progress when we hear about some of the cases that we’ve
heard recently in Halifax and Newfoundland, but it’s also that the increase in demand
can also be daunting and overwhelming for these centres. But we have been here for 40 years, and I
suspect we’ll be here for another 40. So thank you. Moderator: Wonderful, thanks very much, Jen. That’s a really important perspective to
bring to this conversation. Next we have Chief Shawn Devine. Shawn Devine: Good morning. So I’ve been asked as the, as the only Canadian
police officer, I’m not sure if I’m the only Canadian peace officer in the room, but
I’m the only Canadian police officer on the panel, so I’ve been asked if I would
just give a brief overview of, of the circumstances if someone came forward to the police to,
and how an investigation would be started. So I do have to throw a caveat in. I’m from North Bay, not Thunder Bay. North is three hours west of Ottawa, we’re
three hours north of Toronto, we’re not Thunder Bay. We’re a small community, we police about
53,000 people, plus we do a contract policing outside, so total population about 58,000
people. Urban community, people that come into our
city brings our population that we deal with to about 68. We have 94 sworn members, about 25 special
constables and about 25 to 30 civilian members. So we are a small organization. So what I’m going to speak of here is how
we do it. I certainly don’t speak for any other police
service, but, and again, this is best case scenario and I even have to say this is best
case scenario for North Bay, but I struggle with sometimes how it’s done in our organization. So different paths towards reporting to the
police. Many cases come in through 911 or victim initiated. We often attend disturbance calls where a
sexual assault may have occurred, but may have been called in by a neighbour. We often are called to attend our local hospital
where someone has attended and been encouraged by hospital staff to, to report to the police,
and through other investigation which would include a historical investigation and which
somebody has come forward and then the victim has been identified. The first order of business should be the,
the well-being of the victim, both physically and mentally. In my career, 29 years ago, oftentimes we
were so busy and interested in getting disclosure that we often didn’t put into account the
trauma that these victims have possibly gone through. So that is hopefully training. Changing, pardon me. If medical treatment is required, then the,
the victim should be taken to our local hospital. Following that, scene security would be the
next order of business with regards to forensic examination. In our community, we are very fortunate to
have a good working relationship with our local hospital and we have SAN nurses, so
Sexual Assault Nurses, in which if a sexual assault kit is performed, it’s performed
by a trained medical professional. Again, in 29 years, I remember going as a
young officer with an ident officer and standing at an examining room as the nurse passed out
pieces of evidence and we wrote on them, which again, when I look at it in retrospect, was
probably a terrible experience for the victims. So our work with the, with the SAN nurses,
we also have a room at our local hospital. We call it a soft room. It really is just a room that provides a little
bit of comfort for the victim so that they’re not sitting out in the, the main area of the
hospital. It is equipped with a video statement, so
while we are waiting for doctors or nurses that we can start to gather information at
the, at the hospital. The next step would be obtaining disclosure
from the victim. And again, whether we do that at police headquarters,
all of our statements are recorded with regards to sexual violence. Everything gets recorded on DVD. Once we obtain the statement or disclosure
from the victim, victim safety should be the next step, ensuring that the victim leaves
the police station or the hospital facility with the, with some form of, or belief that
there is a safety plan. I have to be honest, in often cases, we hand
them a blue card, which offers sexual assault support through them calling a number. So I definitely think that is an area where
we can, we can improve. We would then move on to investigation of
witnesses in order to gain either corroboration or other witnesses. Depending on the content of the disclosure,
the case may focus first to the offender. So if the case or the disclosure that’s
presented reaches a threshold that we believe that public safety is involved, that subject
may be arrested before we go on with the investigation, but again, that has to be determined by the
nature of the disclosure. We move on to the investigation and looking
at the suspect. The threshold for police across Canada, and
again, every jurisdiction has its own versions and case law, but in Canada, or sorry, pardon
me, in Ontario it is, police have to believe, have reasonable grounds that an offense has
been committed. That is our threshold. The next move after it goes from the police
is to the Crown’s office, where they have different benchmarks or tests that they have
to perform, but for us, a police officer should simply believe that an offence has been taken. Lots of conversations can float into that
as how much discretion police officers should have. Sometimes that is extended with the experience
of a police officer, but truly if there is reasonable grounds to believe that an offense
has been committed, then the court, the matter can go forward to court. Arrest, after arrest or if arrest is made
in the situation, what we have to do is ensure that attendance at a court, ensure public
safety and ensure that the attention is required to maintain public confidence. That’s, that’s actually now is a very
high threshold that we have to, to meet. And if we do achieve that, then it goes to
a bail hearing in which a bail hearing is held and a justice of the peace also has,
attest that they will perform. And in often cases, all but the most serious
cases, most offenders will be released on bail. The, in our organization, we have about 60%
of our 94 officers that are trained in sexual assault. All of our supervisors are trained in, on
sexual assault and cases that come in after they’re investigated have to go through
a, a check by supervisors. The, I will have to say that as far as, I
just happened to have a look at the information with regards to the training that goes on
with sexual assault, that nothing in that training identifies any investigation or any,
the impact of trauma, which I think is something that we really have to look at, and I would
be, I would be willing to approach the Ontario Association of Chiefs of Police in saying
that the Ontario Police College, that that is a factor that should be incorporated into
investigations. I’ll just quickly go through where the North
Bay Police Services in our response to what’s been going on. I’d have to say that we very much like our
partners to the east of us. In June of 2016, North Bay was identified
through Maclean’s magazine article as the fifth most likely place in Canada to be sexually
assaulted. That was based on some figures from 2014. At that point, I, myself and my deputy, decided
that we needed to do something. We weren’t going to sit and argue figures. We decided to take action. I have had the pleasure and privilege of sitting
on our local sexual assault committee, which is called the Amelia Rising Centre. And through my experience with that and the
great people that work there, we started looking at the Philadelphia model probably last June. We are not actively right now doing the Philadelphia
model, but we are definitely researching and are sitting at the table with Brenda Quenneville
from our sexual assault centre and with our local Crown attorney to, to make changes. I truly believe that if we intend to gain
trust with the people that we serve, that we have to be transparent in our actions. I would rather be at the table and struggle
over making some of these changes with our partners than, than arguing about them. So I think there’s real hope with what our
friends have done in Philadelphia and I will be encouraging with my other partners at the
Ontario Associations of Chiefs of Police to not focus so much on these numbers as far
as what we’re saying we’re classifying things. I think we need to do an over, a better overall
job and that is also working with education, with assistance groups and with the courts
to make, to make it a better system. Moderator: Thank you very much, and apologies
for the Thunder Bay reference. (laughter) I need to get up north so that
it’ll sink into my head, the names, name differences. Next we have Terry Fromson. Terry Fromson: Good morning. I appreciate the opportunity to be here with
you today and to learn from you. I already have learned quite a bit this morning
that I think will be helpful for us in Philadelphia, United States. I have been reading the press that you’ve
also faced recently about the high unfounded rates and I can relate very well to the shock
of the news. It’s not dissimilar to what happened in
Philadelphia in 1999 when we all woke up one morning to the Philadelphia Inquirer telling
us that the Philadelphia Police Department had placed one third of the rape complaints
in a non-criminal code. They called it 2701 investigation of person. And these were all cases that received very
little attention from the police department. They were barely investigated and there was
no follow-through with the victims. We were shocked. We thought we were doing it right in Philadelphia. The Woman’s Law project was not working
directly with the police at that point, but we were aware of the reforms that had been
made that we had a, one of the first rape crisis centres in the nation, that we had
dedicated units in both our police department and our prosecutors office that were focused
on sexual violence, that Pennsylvania had done a really good job reforming our state
rape laws. The, they removed all of those burdens that
are used to test women’s veracity historically in rape law. And yet, suddenly, we’re informed that for
decades, cases had either been put in this investigation a person category, essentially
been most to the system because there were at times during those decades very high unfounded
rates in Philadelphia. So as we delved into the situation, we of
course learned that bias was clearly one of the issues. You know, this was 1999. Trauma informed investigation were not discussed. Police were trained to interrogate and there
was a lot of prejudging of victims as not worthy of belief, as well as pressure as police
departments have to improve their statistics and their clearance rate. Supervision could have been improved. We also came to a realization that the FBI’s
uniform crime reporting definition of rape was likely influencing and narrowing the police
perspective on what real rape was. That definition dated back to 1929. It was carnal knowledge of females forcibly
and against their will. So it was leaving out all of the conduct that
we viewed as rape. It excluded oral, anal, object penetration,
it excluded male victims, it excluded anything but forceful penetration. So as we talked to the police, we realized
that we were just talking about different things that this had to be influencing what
was going on there. We also, as the longer we worked with the
police, realized how difficult this job was. You know, the conditions, the lack of resources,
working with women who had experienced sexual violence has to have an effect on you. And so we began to realize that likely vicarious
trauma was going on and that this was a desensitizing problem for the police. Our initial response was to meet with the
Philadelphia Police Department Commissioner and make a few demands. We demanded, first of all, that he reinvestigate
all of the cases that had been put into this non-crime code for the statute of limitations
at that point, which was five years. We asked our city council to hold hearings,
which they did, and we testified and the brought the department back repeatedly over the next
maybe year, year and a half to update what was going on. We ourselves received calls from victims and
tried to intervene and the news coverage continued. And I have to give credit to reporters because
we would not know about these problems if it weren’t for investigative reporters. It wasn’t just Philadelphia, it’s not
just Canada. Once the Philadelphia story came out, we were
getting calls from reporters all over the country and you know, really understood that
for us, it was a national problem. Obviously, it’s more than a national problem. Reforms followed. The Commissioner reorganized the Sex Crimes
Unit, he brought in more detectives, he improved supervision, case determinations had to be
reviewed by a supervisor and approved. He eliminated this investigation code. He did reinvestigate these cases, and to his
surprise, of over 3,000 complaints that were reviewed – and this was an internal audit,
I just want to distinguish as an external audit and this was internal – he had brought
in 45 detectives to review these cases. Of the 3,000 or so, they determined that 681
should have been felony rapes, that over 1,000 should have been other sex crimes and another
about 300 should have been other crimes. And they did what they could to reinvestigate
those complaints. And it was at that point that the Police Commissioner
turned to us, the Women’s Law Project and said we want the women’s groups to come
in here and look at these files. We’ve lost the public’s confidence. We need someone else to come in here. So that was the beginning of the audit, and
before I get into the details or go through the nitty-gritty, I just want to make a couple
of points. Leadership is really important to make this
an effective process. I mean, we were fortunate that our Commissioner
came up with this and extended the invitation. It doesn’t have to arise out of the leadership
of the police department, but the leadership needs to be on board. It needs to really lead the department in
engaging in a process like this. In addition, the process is completely confidential. We go in there agreeing that we are not taking
anything out. we take no notes out with us. We don’t talk to anyone. Nothing is divulged. This is an internal process between advocacy
groups and the police department to work together to improve the system. And it has facilitated what has become a trusting
relationship between us. We don’t go in saying we’re going to get
you, you know. This is not a gotcha. We’re not going to find ah, you did this
wrong. It’s not adversarial. It can be uncomfortable, especially in those
couple of first years. We’ve been doing this since 2000 and we
are going into our 17th year this spring. And we don’t approach it as if, you know,
everyone’s doing a bad job. We know there are really good investigators
and police personnel who are doing a really good job. So having said that, each year, we go in,
hopefully in the spring and there’s four groups. There’s the Women’s Law Project, there’s
our Rape Crisis Centre and there two organizations that focus on child victims that are involved. We review about 400 cases from the previous
year. We schedule about four days to come in hopefully
sequentially. The police department collects the files in
advance, boxes them up for us. It includes all unfounded files, and random
sampling of other files so we can see the full range of the cases. We can’t do the 6,000 cases that come into
that unit every year. They give us a conference room. I bring the uniform crime reporting rules,
I bring the Philadelphia classification system, I bring the sex crimes laws and we gather
around the table and we start going through the files. We mark up little post-its which have grown
bigger now that they make bigger post-its these days, with any questions, comments,
concerns that we have about any particular files. And then we put them aside and after we complete
all of the files, we meet with the Captain of the unit and the supervisors for each shift
and we just go through all of those files. And we find problems, we always find problems. We always have questions. You know, it’s gotten better, it’s not
perfect and it’s important for our eyes to be on it and to have these conversations
every year. We look at a couple of major issues. Was the investigation thorough? It’s clear to us that thoroughness was not
happening and so we examine the files very clearly, were all the witnesses interviewed? Was all the evidence collected? Was it processed? Did the results come back and did someone
look at them before they made a decision on a file? Was there bias? Were there victim-blaming questions asked
of the victim? Did the investigator’s comments reflect
more of a concern for the accused than for the victim? Did they express doubt in the victim’s voracity? Was she accused of lying? Did they use open-ended questions or did they
use interrogation techniques? If there was a recantation, was it coerced
by the accused? Was it due to some treatment by the officers? We still care very much about classification
because classification led to non-investigation. So we look at all those decisions. Was what it called when it came in? What did it change through the investigation? Was there an arrest? If it was unfounded, were all the criteria
for unfounding met? If it was exceptionally cleared, were all
those criteria met? And then, and then, we ha-, you know, we have
our feedback session. We have conversations. We raise our questions. Sometimes, there are answers. Sometimes, it’s really just a question that
can be answered. Sometimes, you know, we want more done. We don’t understand why it wasn’t done. We debate these things. You know, sometimes there’s agreement on
the other side, sometimes there’s not. At the end of the day, you know, we don’t
have any control what happens after we walk out the door and we have to assume, you know,
good faith on both sides here that something will be done. We know that they leave the room with files,
with our notes on them, and you know, that there will be some further conduct, either
talking to the investigator, addressing coding issues, further investigations. There have been cases that have been unfounded
and reopened and reinvestigated. We do this on an annual basis and we really
think that this is an important thing to do. We get to look at a lot of files at once. We get to discern trends, maybe trends in
what particular investigators are doing or trends, you know, unit-wide. We can find patterns of bias and inappropriate
police behaviour and we can see improvement. So it’s, it’s been a really productive
program, and we really appreciate that successive Commissioners in Philadelphia and Captains
of the Special Victims Unit have welcomed our continuing to do the audit. You know, it’s not written in stone, although
we’d like it to be. And so it’s, it’s been a productive, effective
tool in reducing bias. Thank you. Moderator: Thank you very much, Terry. And last member on the panel, certainly not
least, is Lieutenant Thomas McDevitt. Lt Thomas McDevitt: Good morning everyone. As Terry said, we were under intense scrutiny
by the newspaper. Even had the reporters knocking on my door
and my children asking me what the reporters wanted, wanted at the house. It all started cause of years ago, before
I was there, our unfounded rate was extremely high. I think they reported at some point around
43%. To counteract that, they started using a code
which was called 2701, which was an investigation of person. And I’ll give you briefly what that was,
what we were trained on that was. You know, someone would come in and they gave
an account of what happened and the investigator had some additional questions, and either
attempted to get a hold of the victim or they noted they attempted to get a hold of the
victim, and they couldn’t. Rather than make that an unfounded classification,
they left it in investigation. Unfortunately, pretty much nothing else ever
happened to it. I think I see on your thing Canada had about
2,000 sexual assaults. Well, we handle 6,000 cases a year in Philadelphia. About 3,000 are sexual assaults, the other
3,000 in our unit’s child abuse. We had a lot of reasons why we think we did
what we did. None of them were acceptable. What I can tell you was that when we were
told that, you know, women’s groups are going to come in and review our files, we
were come on in. We’re good. We think we’re one of the best in the country. We’re doing exactly as we’ve been taught
to do. Unfortunately, when we started to go back
and review things, we realized that for a lot of reasons, we became lackadaisical. We didn’t really go back and make sure that
the victim was contacted again, how often did we try, did we send letters? We didn’t do everything we could have done
to re-contact the victim and those cases stayed open. There’s times that I remember me and the
other Lieutenant that was in charge with going back and doing all these cases said how did
we get this bad? And my name was on some of them folders. And like, how did we get this bad? How did we let these things go? I think at that point, we realized that, you
know, we needed to change. Someone said yesterday if you don’t look
at yourself and see what you’re doing wrong, or what you’re doing right, you’re never
going to get any better. And that’s kind of where we was, we were
at that point. And then when they came in, we realized that,
you know, everything that we had been taught as police officers and probably even as people,
I remember my first case, I went to the hospital and the victim was outside. She had called friends to the hospital and
she was outside laughing and joking with her friends. And in my experience growing up was that’s
not the way someone reacts. I mean, that’s, she’s supposed to be crying
and upset. Well, it was a founded, it was a founded rape. We arrested someone. What I didn’t know was that she had previously
been assaulted at college and no arrest had been made and that was her way of coping with
it. So there’s different things you learn as
you do these things. But the different things that we learned with
the investigations were, you know, we didn’t know the name, the neurobiology of trauma,
but we’ve always kind of seen there was inconsistencies with what someone said. Unfortunately for our victims at the time
is when police work, you’re taught inconsistencies means someone’s not telling the truth. And that’s how you base your investigations. Well, she was inconsistent in this statement,
she was inconsistent in that statement. As time went on, and we’re learning now,
as it’s coming out is you have to expect that in these types of investigations. You have to expect those inconsistencies. And, and we learned that. We also learned the questions that we asked
and the type of questions that we asked. For instance, if you said to someone did you
scream? Well, she knows everyone in the world’s
going to expect her to scream, so she’s going to say yeah, I screamed because she
expects that’s what you’re expecting as an answer. That was almost an accusatory question. It was almost well, if you didn’t scream,
this probably didn’t happen. So we learned those type of questions. We learned the why questions, you know, why
did you stay in the bar? Why did you go with him? We stopped asking those type of questions. We also stopped asking do you want to prosecute? We just thought that everybody should ask
cause if you don’t want to prosecute, we’re not going to go any further. Not realizing that that question automatically
puts the victim back on her heels, saying why would you ask me that? I mean, I came in here didn’t I? Why, is there something wrong? Like, you don’t believe me? So, so we learned a lot of things on how to
do a proper investigation. I know Terry just said she’s not sure if,
what we did with our files, but I can tell you that over the years, I’m sure she’s
seen an improvement in our investigations and what we did. The biggest thing that we learned is that,
you know, you have to really do every investigation. You have to take it from the beginning to
the end, no matter what it is. If you do a complete investigation, gather
all the evidence, right from the very beginning. You don’t wait later, you want to wait for
evidence before you follow through. You have to do that complete investigation. If you do that, no one ever can accuse you
of doing anything wrong with your investigation. And, and you gave the victim all the dignity
and investigation that they deserved, but you also make sure that you’re not really
– and the other thing that’s sensitive and eases, you got to make sure you’re not
accusing someone of doing something that they didn’t do, and being accused of that for
the rest of life. So when they talk about sexual assault investigations,
it’s very, very, the most difficult investigation you’re going to have. You have a homicide, everybody’s going to
tell you somebody got killed. They’re going to say he died. You can have all the evidence in the world
in these cases, and it doesn’t really say that something happened. So you need to put your best investigators
there. Unfortunately, I’ll give you a quick history
of Philadelphia. We were, we did have one of the first Sexual
Assault Units. They put us in an abandoned school that the
school district didn’t want anymore. We didn’t have any heat for two years. We had kerosene heaters. Then they put us in an old stable that had
been abandoned by the mounted unit. We were there for several years. Then they put us into an old abandoned army
arsenal. For us, it was the best place we’d ever
been. We had carpet and air conditioning. (laughter) We shared the same bathroom with
the defendants, the complainants and the police officers. And eventually, with the help of our advocates,
we got the best facility in the police department. The investigators were then treated like they
were handling the hardest crime in the police department, which had never happened to us
before. The only way for this to work, if anyone’s
thinking of doing it, is, I mean, when they came in, they really told us look, we’re
not here, we’re not here to say gotcha, we’re here just to work with you, become
your partner and make this better for everyone. And that includes having the district attorney’s
office on board. The investigator needs to know that all the
hard work they’re doing, the prosecutor’s going to follow through with it. And the victims also need to know that if
they’re coming in, a prosecutor’s going to follow through with it. Luckily for us in Philadelphia, we had all
that. And I heard earlier when you talked about
training, I’m a big advocate on training, but you need to have Chiefs to come, as the
Chief is here, cause it has to come from the to down. And their top command also has to come to
these type of trainings cause what you’ll hear sometimes is why am I going to spend
this money? You know, it’s an acquaintance rape. The complainant ain’t going to follow through
anyway. I can devote this money somewhere else. Well, they have to realize that this is just
as important as anything else they’re doing. And then the other big thing is training is
the first responder. As you said earlier, probably one of the most
important people in the investigation is the first responder. They’re the first person that the victim’s
going to come in contact with and probably more influential than anyone else whether
the victim follows through with the investigation or not. And then, the investigator has to learn to
have empathy for the victim in the type of questions they answer, they’re asked. All these things combined give you, give you
a better investigation and we did start doing better investigations in Philadelphia. Things do have to improve. One of the biggest things is making the public
aware of what goes on on a sexual assault investigation and how the victim is traumatized,
whether it’s an acquaintance rape or a stranger rape. I think that, you know, we did a great job
over the years with domestic violence, and most people understand that, you know, an
offender, a victim’s going to go back to the offender for various reasons. People don’t understand that in sexual assault. People don’t understand that, you know,
people are trusting and they put themselves in positions because they trust people. And then someone takes advantage of that trust
and assaults them. The public don’t understand that. Until we get the public to understand that,
people are not going to report and you’re going to get non-convictions in court. To me that’s the biggest hurdle that we
have to conquer cause it’s still the only crime that we blame the victim. When the victim comes in, it’s, the victim
already know you’re blaming them, and it’s still the only crime we blame the victim. We have to change that around to, you know,
what did the offender do, not what the victim did. And that’ll be it for me.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *