Thursday, 30 October 2014

“There is little evidence in existence … of being engaged in criminal sexual offending”

Boast-trusters around the country are angry this morning, say the papers, because the police have found themselves unable to prosecute teenagers boasting about raping drunk teenagers.

The anger was universal. The presumption of innocence, not at all. And the evidence? After a year’s long investigation, not so much, it seems. Police have investigated, but officer in charge  Karyn Malthus, a child sexual abuse specialist, has concluded there is insufficient evidence to confirm the boasts.

This investigation began based on boasts on social media, beaten up and fanned by mainstream media.  It began “with an extensive analysis of social media,”  identifying 110 girls engaged in online discussions that were “cause for concern.” Formal interviews with those willing to make their allegations specific resulted in Malthus’s team investigating 8 incidents involving 7 victims, and 35 males “of interest.”

The relevant evidential paragraph is probably this one:

We want to be clear that the basis for interviews of the majority of these individuals was hearsay and rumour. There is little evidence in existence to accuse the majority of persons of interest of being engaged in criminal sexual offending.

As Home Paddock concludes, “Immoral’s not illegal.”

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