Leonardo DiCaprio’s portrayal of a con artist can’t compare to this real life accused Lothario who faces justice for the first time today! Continue reading A True Life “Catch Me If You Can!”
No matter how sexual assault takes place, the victim will suffer a permanent loss.
Being sexually violated, in any form, will have a profound impact on your sense of self. Whether you were violently assaulted, or whether you were violated through the insidious, manipulative breach of your self determination by lies, you will need to grieve your loss in order to recover.
We can never go back in time to reclaim our un-raped self, but we can advance through the stages of grief and loss to achieve emotional stability once again.
The Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network provides an informative post that explains the stages of recovery from sexual assault. It’s important for victims of sexual assault by fraud to understand that the same characteristics of recovery apply to them as well.
- Victims can go through denial and attempt to repress their sense of loss.
- They could endlessly ruminate, becoming obsessed with the harm they suffered.
- They could try to ameliorate the problem by moving away or changing jobs.
- They could have interrupted sleep patterns, weight gain or loss, and deep depression.
Not all family and friends of rape by fraud sufferers understand the devastation in this crime. Hopefully, society has begun to speak about and recognize it. But even your normal support system may not be enough to pick you up from deep depression and help you stop ruminating.
When you find your life impaired by helplessness, anger, anxiety, rumination, trust issues, or other related affects, seek the aid of a professional who has experience with sociopathic behavior and recovery for sexual assault victims
I received this comment last night from a person who refers to himself as “Boozer.” I thought it so important that it warranted an actual post.
It demonstrates exactly how and why the crime of SexFraud takes place:
First of all, of course we know we’re having sex with a person. Men are not a bunch of creepy soulless monsters. We’re actual people as well with real feelings Guys get used and summarily dumped too. I’ve had women (only a few, lol) that never got back to me after we had sex. Did I feel bad? Of course, but I never thought they belonged in jail for it, because they don’t.
The word “entitled” is tricky. I don’t think a woman in a bar is entitled to my finances, my workplace or even my last name if I don’t want to give it out. It’s none of her business. I’m not going to share my private info with every girl I talk to on the chance we might leave the bar together later. She’s not entitled to anything of mine and if that’s a problem then she’s entitled to say goodnight anytime she pleases. If I exaggerate or put the best spin on things, she can accept that or not, it’s her choice. I’m not promising her anything except hopefully a good time. It’s 2015, if by now you’re not aware people might lie to you, you shouldn’t be out walking the streets.
Fraud in the legal sense means misrepresenting something to get money or something of value. What of actual value is given or taken during sex? Realistically the thing of most value in the situation is the man’s sperm.
And here is my response to him:
SexFraud isn’t about getting dumped or not calling you back after sex. I have never said that you should divulge every facet of your background when you first meet someone, but before you have sex with them, you should straighten out any lies you’ve told them.
Frankly, you have demonstrated exactly the type of mentality that’s at the heart of the problem and I thank you for being so candid. I think you exemplify a mindset that is pervasive in today’s society, and you don’t even recognize it as a “sexual assault” mentality. It starts by thinking that sex is simply a type of entertainment and an entitlement, not a privilege.
Apparently, your finances are even more “private” to you than your sex organs. You’ll expose them to someone who you barely know. But don’t worry, SexFraud laws won’t prosecute the casual hook-up in which the victim failed to behave reasonably and jumped into bed with you without any inquiry or research.
Some women feel that way as well. For instance, sex workers share their bodies with people all the time with no emotional connection to their private parts. Or so they think until they’re ripped off, like the recent case in Canberra Australia where the offender was convicted of rape by fraud by tricking her into thinking she would get paid. He gave her a bag that was supposed to contain money. It didn’t.
Just because you don’t value intimacy does not mean that other people don’t. In fact, most of moral society would more happily get ripped off for money than have their sex organs violated. One makes you angry. The other makes you defiled.
Fraud is usurping something of value through a lie. Most people actually value their sexual organs and their right to self-determination over who they share them with. If they didn’t, we wouldn’t have any rape laws at all. Violating a person’ sex organs would simply be an assault. It’s not. It’s a sexual assault, rape, sexual battery, sexual misconduct, sexfraud, or whatever name you’d like to associate with it.
Most people have “feelings” about what happens to them. They don’t necessarily “feel” (that’s called “emotional empathy,”) for what happens to others. From what you’ve said, it seems that you lack emotional empathy.
Having feelings for your own condition, but failing to feel for others is a Narcissitc, and possibly Sociopathic mentality. Lots of folks go through the world that way. Society needs to be made aware how prevalent your mentality is. And laws have to be created to protect people you would harm through you failure to stop yourself.
That person whose sexual organs have no value to you, except warm flesh and body fluids, actually lives inside her body. She is someone’s mother, or sister or daughter. And every time I’ve used the word “she” in this post, I’m also referring to the “he’s” that get violated this same way.
The media has stirred up a lot of frenzy over Assembly Bill #3908 in NJ, Sexual Assault by Fraud. But the silly scenarios they use to describe the crime, won’t really lead to an arrest for a couple of reasons:
- Personal Responsibility: In New Jersey, personal responsibility means that victims have to take the measures of a “reasonable person” to protect themselves. So if you meet someone and they tell you they drive a Lamborghini, when the only wheels they own are on their bicycle, and you hop in the sack with them without conducting any due diligence or getting to know them well, you haven’t exhibited the level of responsible behavior that would enable you to file charges.
- Proof: Criminal trials aren’t decided by “truth.” Rather, they’re determined by “proof.” So if you don’t have documented proof or witnesses that can attest to your claim, you will not be able to convince the police, Prosecutor, Grand Jury, trial judge, and a jury of your peers that a crime actually took place.
Here are some examples of recent media hype:
Newark Star Ledger, 11/24/14
A man woos a woman to bed with tales of his riches, fast cars and a vacation home in Monaco. But he actually lives in his mother’s basement.
Here’s the conflict:
- Did she hop into bed with him when they first met without really getting to know him?
- Where’s the proof that he actually made those claims?
Newark Star Ledger, 11/24/14
A seemingly wealthy widow convinces a younger man to sleep with her on the notion that they may marry and he’ll inherit her money. In reality, she’s broke.
Here’s the conflict:
- Did he hop into bed with her without any research or attempt to get to know her?
- Where’s the proof that she actually made those claims?
“What if a man were to say to a woman ‘I love you’ and engage in sex and he really didn’t love her? It could be as simple as that,”
Here’s the conflict:
Lies of intent are particularly difficult to prove. The accused’s defense could simply be, “I changed my mind.” Unless there was significant proof that the offender had no interest in following through at the time the statement was made, no claim could be brought against them.
Hi Arka, March 16, 2015
Can you have someone jailed after sex for:
1) Not being as attractive as you thought they were?
2) Not making as much money as you thought they were?
3) Not being as young/old/intelligent/interesting as you thought they were?
4) Not really being old high school classmates with [insert name of famous actor or actress here]?
5) Not really being a men’s rights advocate?
6) Not really being a feminist?
7) Not really being a good cook?
8) Not really being a skillful lover?
For all of the reasons previously stated the answers are no, no, no, no, no, no, no and no. Plus… attractiveness is a visual perception, not a fraud, Beauty is in the eyes of the beholder. And a person’s skillfulness in sex, or lack thereof, is not a hoax or a fraud. It is what it is.
So who would actually get arrested?
Scam artists like William Allen Jordan who defraud people are likely to be charged. He was convicted in New Jersey of theft by fraud and would probably have been convicted of Sexual Assault by Fraud had the law existed at the time. It is alleged that he proposed marriage, engagement ring and all, under a false name and with totally bogus background information, some of which he forged.
An airline employee has infected several women with an STD by tricking them into unprotected sex. He provides them with forged documents about his health.
A New Jersey man is a bigamist, and likely, with multiple wives. He’s active on internet dating sites, and claiming that he’s single, a Marine Reservist and a Psychologist with the FBI. Not a single word of it is true.
A con artist and swindler works in Florida, Idaho and California using internet dating sites to locate targets. He misrepresents his age, his marital status and his health to prey on women for sex and money. He backs up his identity claims with an elaborate web presence that’s full of hot air.
What warrants prosecution?
Cases in which the authorities find that despite the victim’s best efforts to behave responsibly, they were duped, would be prosecutorial. But only if they were accompanied by sufficient proof. One night stands with someone who lied would not be strong enough to warrant an arrest.
People shouldn’t lie to induce sex. If they were untruthful regarding their identity information or intentions when you met them, the time to straighten it out is BEFORE you engage in intimacy. When they fail to do so, they are sexually assaulting you, not seducing you. But you would not be able to bring charges against them without responsible behavior on your part, and significant proof.
Society’s Cockeyed Sense of Sexual Exploitation
Here are some recent comments I’ve received or seen, on global internet sites and discussion boards, that evidence the total confusion of society over what constitutes sexual assault by fraud and why it’s a crime. My response, when I feel a response is warranted, follows the question in italics.
So if a woman has fake boobs, I think that should be a “crime on par with rape”. After all, we are all equal under the law, and if a woman lies, she may be GUILTY of a class A Misdemeanor….
Really? On what planet?
So if a man tells you he only dates natural blondes (wants kids one day with blonde hair) and you lie about dying your hair and say you are a natural blonde, that is ok? In looking for a potential mate, it is ok to lie about your physical characteristics? Seriously? They only true reason to have sex is to pass on genes to children, but it is ok to lie about your genes? Lie about your income and it is rape though? You people are crazy.
I support your law, so long as it is truly fair. Which means women don’t get to lie about their appearance anymore. Since that will never happen, I label you all hypocrites.
Lying about your genes is not ok Jason.
Your comparing rape to a fraudulent car sale… your absolutely INSANE! My guess is that youve been hurt by men in the past, maybe you should sell some of the cats you own, or possibly stop dating idiots… either way, maybe your meant to be alone…
Analogies may be tough for a person who doesn’t know the difference between “your” and “you’re”. You seem to lack compassion and it’s clouding your judgement.
By these standards EVERY woman wearing makeup is a RAPIST.
Fake nails? RAPIST!!!!
Lies about her age? RAPIST!!!!!!
This is the FSA (the FUKED up States of America)
Gee, isn’t Leftism, Statism, Feminism fun?
(No. No it isnt.)
Neither is ignorance. It’s sad.
Use your eyes, that’s why God gave them to you. If her appearance without enhancements is important to you, ask her to take them off BEFORE you engage in sex. And the same is true on both sides of the gender aisle.
So if some little gold-digger is on the hunt for a rich guy to support her for the rest of her life engages in sex with some guy because he’s rich and later finds out he’s not, it’s rape. This is the most ludicrous thing I ever heard! You people need to get back in touch with reality LOL.
How ’bout changing reality so people don’t get harmed?
My point exactly. It’s not a big deal. Get over it. We don’t need to prosecute people for silly lies.
Except when “silly lies” rape people. An easy, convenient triviality to the offender can have a major impact on the victim’s life. We’re talking about penetrating their sex organs based on a triviality to the offender. How dismissive of the victim’s right to self determination can you get? If it’s so minor, don’t do it!
There was a time when having sex with someone for financial gain was called prostitution. Are we turning intimacy into a putocartic commodity now? This bill should be called the Jersey Whore Act.
Many of the hoaxes created in internet dating are not only for the purpose of defrauding someone for sex, but as a means to scam them for money as well. The scammer is, indeed, a prostitute, whether male or female. When you’re having sex with a prostitute, don’t you think you’re entitled to know?
I told a chick that I drove a Ferrari and she immediately wanted to have sex with me. Afterwards we were sitting on the couch and she asks “Can you give me a ride home now? It’s getting kinda late.” and my roommate heard her and responded “On what, his bike??” Her jaw immediately dropped and she looked at me and I told her “yea it’s true, I only drive a bicycle.” I couldn’t stop laughing. It was terrific.
Could you be more of a jerk if you tried? Nope, I don’t think so!! But, unfortunately, what you are bragging about would constitute a “he said, she said,” and lack sufficient evidence to be prosecuted. And jumping into the sack with you without any attempt at discovery of the facts is just plain irresponsible behavior that does not warrant a case.
In the end people lie to themselves and believe what they want to believe.
Hmmm… Except when they’re deliberately lied to!
Mens Rights Movement
Lies by members of privileged gender is legal, moral and good… when the man lies, he is a rapist!!! We are living in an anti-men society. Such society cannot be corrected unless Men organize themselves for their rights and fair society.
Ghheez- What about Gender Neutral do you not understand?
This is just more evidence that feminism is a mental disorder. The feminist movement is a vile, disgusting communist/globalist front with the intent of driving a wedge between men and women, undermining the traditional institution of marriage, destroying families, and collapsing our culture. It is an unnatural and perverse philosophy that is gnawing at and corrupting the hearts and minds of both women and men in our society.
Anyone who has more ridiculous objections to add, or spots an outrageous comment from elsewhere, is invited to post it below.
Lying to someone is not a crime. Lying in order to take something you otherwise would not get is.
Yes, people GIVE things to scammers all the time. But their act of giving is invalidated by the deception that caused them to do so. The victim’s consent is considered ineffective under the law. A crime, not just a lie, has taken place.
We don’t consider being scammed “changing your mind,” when you discover that a hoax deprived you of your assets, but when the scam is about sex, people seem to think that upon recognition, the victim simply changed their mind about having given their permission.
Nothing could be further from the truth. Just as in all crimes of fraud, they never gave their knowing consent in the first place.
In 1962, the American Law Institute expressed illegal consent the following way:
“Consent is ineffective if induced by force, duress, or deception.”
Many states across the country, including the state of NJ, where Assembly Bill #3908 is currently pending, have adopted the terminology expressed by Model Penal Code as the law in their own jurisdiction.
Why is society blind to rape by fraud?
Somehow, when fraud is used as a tool to undermine a person’s self determination over their sexual sanctity, an act of rape or sexual assault when committed by any other means, most of society does not recognize that a crime is occurring. Drug someone, force someone through coercion or violence….. we know they were raped. Dupe someone? To many people, it’s just “puffery”.. the business as usual of conducting seduction.
The fact that the offender sexually penetrated the victim by usurping their consent through an illegal means is irrelevant to them. They are people who feel manipulation is their right. When they manipulate you for your money, they’ll go to jail. When they manipulate you to sexually penetrate you, that’s perfectly okay.
It’s not! When they defraud you to sexually penetrate your body, they are sexually assaulting you, not seducing you. And if rape by fraud laws exist in your jurisdiction, whether or not they will go to jail depends on whether or not you can prove that a crime took place.
Here’s the definition of fraud that everyone in law school learns in their very first class on this topic:
- The offender lies
- The offender knows they are lying
- The offender expects the person to rely on their lie
- The person relies on their lie
- The offender takes what the person values based on 1-4
As it does every day, fraud figured prominently in today’s headlines.
In Fargo, ND, two farmers, Aaron and Dereck Johnson, defrauded the government by deliberately destroying their potato crop and cashing-in on a federal insurance plan.
Even our government leaders seem prone to scamming
In NY, deeply entrenched Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, a fixture in the state’s legislature for over 20 years, was recently charged with a fraudulent hoax that put over $4M in his pockets. How can we expect legislators who use their law practice to mask illegal kickbacks to possibly understand the harm in wearing a mask to conduct sex?
Society has lost its moral compass
People are defrauded of sex each and every day. They feel defiled. For many, their lives are shattered because one person felt that their entitlement to get sex, any way they could, was more important than their victim’s self determination over your body. They violated. They don’t give a damn. This needs to stop.
Editor’s note….. Here’s a new and interesting twist on a sexual hoax. This international scam artist entices women into marriage commitments so he can enjoy the luxury of their family’s homes when he globe hops to be with his “fiance.”
This story was supplied by an Asian woman we’ll call “Susi” about the man she aptly calls, “Demon.”
The “International Traveler” Sex Scam
I am a woman who has been physically, financially and emotionally abused by a serial fraudster.
I met a Canadian man, Demon, via an online matching service. He was a Pharmacy Manager at a retail giant. We started communicating by online chatting, phone calls and emails. On his personal profile, he clearly stated he was single with no children, and looking for a wife. He asked me if I was marriage minded. He also had brief conversations with my mother over the phone on several occasions. We first met face-to-face in France.
The perfect gentleman
Whenever we crossed the street or entered doorways, he would lightly touch my back, in a “ladies first” gesture. I thought he was being a gentleman. But as we were sight-seeing, he used that gesture to push me down the stairs of the train car we had just ridden, and I stumbled onto the platform. I was badly injured and still suffer orthopedic pain from this incident.
We had talked about our room arrangement before our trip, I had insisted on separate rooms. I booked and paid for my own accommodations for the evening of my arrival and the next night. He had not booked a room for himself and there was just one room left in the hotel. It was the busiest season in Paris because of the holiday and exhibitions; therefore, finding accommodations was quite competitive, The last room was taken while he hesitated.
His motive to injure me
I believe that Demon injured me in order to make me feel dependent on him. He emphasized that he was a medical professional and was capable of taking care of me. I was in a great deal of pain from the fall.
After the trip, he frequently talked about marriage, a wedding, and honeymoon. Demon wanted to come to see my parents and preferred staying at our place to a hotel so he could get to know us better.
The truth comes out
Shortly before his visit, I learned that the residential address he had given me actually belonged to a former employee (also a pharmacist) at his same company. When I noticed that he had lied, I spoke to him about it and ended the relationship.
I also learned that he misused his workplace phone for carrying-on a fraudulent relationship with me and with other woman who he met online. I discovered that he was a married pervert, with three children, who had exploited me and my family.
He establishes himself as a fiance to target a woman’s parents and use their home for lodging as he travels the world.
In pursuit of justice
My damages from the accident are serious. I still suffer from severe pain and have also endured depression both due to the injury and the deception he perpetrated. I wasted lots of money on a trip that was totally based on false pretenses. In addition, I have spent, and will have to spend, huge sums for my medical needs which include braces, rehabilitation and surgeries.
I filed a lawsuit in my country, against this con artist. A series of pleadings were held, however Demon failed to submit an answer to the claim or appear in court. A default judgment was issued, and he did not appeal. Accordingly, the judgment was confirmed.
I had sent letters (authenticated by a Notary) and my lawyer also sent a demand letter. Demon was informed about the possibility of enforcement of judgments from outside of Canada. He was given ample time to prepare for and enter his plea. He did not.
I am awaiting the result of the further action I must take to secure payment for the judgement. The policies of the Canadian government toward processing such claims places a financial burden on the victim that impedes justice.
A woman named Deb contacted me about what had happened to her and asked me to post it. It’s a tale that’s typical of the outrageous behavior of internet romantic scam artists with an enlightening “take-away”.
A little background….
Tom seemed to be a great match for Deb. He found her in an on-line dating site. He was a good communicator and they spent hours on the phone, almost daily, throughout their eight month relationship. She felt the “chemistry” of a new found connection right away when they first met.
He claimed that his job caused him to travel on assignments. Shortly after they met, he was called away. Little did she recognize, at the time, that married men frequently disguise their existing relationships by claiming the need to travel for business.
More false claims
Tom pretended that he was a Marine Reservist and a Forensic Psychologist. He’d been turned down by the Marines and never went to college. He stated his age as 41 when he was actually 52. He is alleged to be a bigamist. The case has been filed against him in New Jersey and is currently pending.
Debunking the myth
We often hear people accuse SexFraud victims of ignorance and gullibility. But one would hardly use those terms to describe Deb. In fact, she’s trained to recognize, sort out, and deal with issues that surface in dating. She’s a dating coach. She believes that the elevated level of conquest piqued Tom’s interest and made her a “high value” target.
You can read more about Deb’s case on her blog. She has located a number of additional victims who Tom has hoaxed and they serve as a support group for each other.
Spectacular in photos, but not so pretty when it comes to protecting against Sexual Assault by Fraud!
There are 13 types of fraud identified in Chapter 37 of Maine’s Penal Code. And one of them, Misuse of Identification, is particularly revealing. It states that oral misrepresentation of name, date of birth, or any other means of identifying the person that is generally accepted as accurate and reliable, would make the offender guilty of a specific crime.
This statute enables us to see that providing oral false statements about one’s identity, when used to conduct an illicit act, is, indeed, penalized in Maine, but not when it comes to defrauding a victim of sex.
Enlightening clause on Sexual Assault and Sexual Contact….
2. A person is guilty of gross sexual assault if that person engages in a sexual act with another person and:
A. The actor has substantially impaired the other person’s power to appraise or control the other person’s sexual acts by furnishing, as defined in section 1101, subsection 18, paragraph A, administering or employing drugs, intoxicants or other similar means. Violation of this paragraph is a Class B crime; [2007, c. 474, §1 (AMD).]
A. The other person is a patient of the actor and has a reasonable belief that the actor is administering the substance for medical or dental examination or treatment; or [2007, c. 474, §2 (NEW).
§33. Result as an element; causation
Unless otherwise provided, when causing a result is an element of a crime, causation may be found where the result would not have occurred but for the conduct of the defendant operating either alone or concurrently with another cause, unless the concurrent cause was clearly sufficient to produce the result and the conduct of the defendant was clearly insufficient. [1981, c. 324, §14 (NEW).]
In every act of Sexual Assault by Fraud, the result, sexual relations, would not have occurred but for the conduct of the defendant operating either alone or concurrently with another cause. In fact, many cases of sexual assault by fraud occur alongside defrauding the victim of money or property and sometimes, even for immigration status.
- Coercion, (threat)
- Sexual relations with someone underage
- Sexual relations with someone mentally incapable of consent
- Administering drugs intoxicants or similar means
- Engaing in sex with someone who is incapable of resisting and has not consented to the sexual act
- Engaging in sex when various circumstances of authority or medical care exist
In general, Maine needs to create specific language to protect its citizens, and travelers who come to fish, hunt, swim, hike, ski, kayak, bird watch, snowboard, surf, sail and conduct all kinds of other activities, from the perils of sexual assault by fraud when they’re visiting the state.
You can help!
Carlos Lamborghini is NOT the name of the man who scammed Lauren Lazarro of Tampabay/Sarasota FL. We’ve changed it ’til additional victims step forward to bring charges. There’s safety, and validity, in numbers. We know he’s harmed many unsuspecting women who think they have no recourse.
This Italian Lothario, con artist has claimed the name of a speedy sports car and can rip you off for sex and money from zero to 10 seconds!
Here’s what happened in Ms. Lazarro’s words:
I was defrauded on a popular dating site by a man that was a complete impostor presenting himself as a wealthy Romantic Italian man that had been a cruise ship officer and presently working as a marketing entrepreneur. All of his professionally designed web pages and videos supported his claims. I fell in love with him.
He defrauded me of thousands of dollars and over a year of my life in a long distance relationship. He tried to come after a lot more money to finish me off. I think his Italian accent was fake and his name is an alias. He lied about his age. I also believe he lied about his country of origin, his military service, and his education.
Without legislation on the use of “false personation” to conduct rape by fraud, I can’t even file a complaint with the sheriff’s office. I was told, “Lesson learned,” and “Don’t come back!” So, the problem is that this predator can set up shop in town with internet dating, scam a lot of women in a local area, and then flee the area. I am sure there are more victims of this man in Florida. It was an elaborate scheme.
If you’ve been defrauded by a man whose name mimics a fancy high-end sports car, with a sophisticated web-site that promotes his, probably, non-existent, multi-level business, please comment here, or you can reach Joyce privately by using the data form on the Stop Rape By Fraud page of this blog. None of the information you enter there is publicly disclosed.
He can be anywhere but is known to frequent Florida, Idaho and California.
Last Moments of Freedom
Dressed in street clothes he’d soon be swapping for an orange jumpsuit, William Allen Jordan, watches the case preceding his own.
In his comments to Judge Phillip Haines, New Jersey ADA, Steve Eife said, “The case against Jordan reads like a fictional book.”
Jordan had pretended to be an operative of the British Defense Ministry to scam NJ resident, Mischele Lewis, into sexual conduct, a long term relationship, pregnancy, and the loss of of $4,383.00.
Playing the sympathy card
Attorney, Karen Thek, attempted to impress Judge Philip Haines with efforts Jordan had made toward restitution. He’d handed over a cashier’s check for the amount he’d stolen from Lewis. He’d pleaded guilty to the charges. Thek stressed that Jordan had difficulty raising the money due to the negative notoriety created by the press.
Ever the charmer, Jordan attempted a last ditch effort to soften up Judge Haines. He lamented, “My attorney said it all. All I can do is apologize. My mother is in the hospital. I just want to get back to helping her and my father,” No one in the court room who knew his story was running for the tissue box!
Haines recounted a litany of prior convictions and arrests, starting with seven counts of passing bad checks, each for over $200. He cited British convictions for bigamy and sexual assault. He remarked that even the five years of prison that Jordan had already served failed to deter him, and that the public needed to be protected from him.
Jordan was sentenced to:
- Three years’ incarceration in the New Jersey State Penitentiary
- Full restitution
- Waiver of appeal
- No contact, ever, with Ms. Lewis
Jordan received credit for 130 days he’d already served, then Officer Kocher approached and directed him to put his hands behind his back. He complied and she cuffed his wrists. Then she quietly escorted him out of the room to the jail located down the hall. After the harm he’d created for the women whose lives he’d touched, the irony that his jailer was a female was poetic.
So ended Will Jordan’s personal contribution to sexual assault by fraud law in the state of New Jersey.
Jordan’s case was the first that came my way after publishing Carnal Abuse by Deceit. The book was launched on November 20, 2013. Donna Anderson contacted me about the Jordan case less than 4 months later. She’d read my book and reviewed it on her blog, LoveFraud.com. She knew I was advocating for laws to protect against the type of crime Jordan committed, and working with victims to get that accomplished. When Lewis complained to her about her case, Anderson referred her to me.
Lewis read my book and learned why Jordan’s conduct should be a criminal offense. Her case was a good example for the law I’d suggested, so I agreed to help.
- A post on this web page attracted the attention of Michele Noberto who’d inspired “Nicole’s Law” to provide restraining orders for sexual assault victims. Even though Lewis had applied for one and been turned down by Judge John Tomasello, Noberto discovered that a temporary order had indeed been issued under “Nicole’s Law.”
- Assemblyman Troy Singleton, who represents Lewis’s district, noticed the press coverage Anderson and I had generated. He offered to submit a legislative bill prohibiting Sexual Assault by Fraud.
- NBC’s Dateline created an episode about Jordan called The Mystery Man.
Currently existing laws in NJ and the Prosecutor’s failure
ADA Steve Eife insisted on charging Jordan with sexual assault by coercion even though no coercion had taken place. Lewis agreed to Eife’s plan and the grand jury failed to indict because there was no coercion.
Before the grand jury met, I’d appealed to Eife to enter a charge that excluded coercion, but he’d turned a deaf ear. At the sentencing I asked why he hadn’t used mental incapacity or simple sexual assault. Mental incapacity states that an offender cannot use drugs or any other means to alter a victim’s awareness. He insisted that only referred to hypnosis even though his claim is not supported by the statute.
There was clear and compelling proof that Jordan had defrauded Lewis of sex and a possibility that the Grand Jury could have indicted. For sure, they could not indict on “coercion. They indicted for theft by fraud which was based on the same lies that defrauded Lewis of sex.
I argued that deception vitiates consent as stated in Model Penal Code. Eife claimed that Model Penal Code’s Consent Provision does not apply in NJ law, yet it’s as plain as day on page 148 of NJ’s Criminal Law Digest:
Consent is ineffective, unless otherwise provided, if it is given by a person who is induced by force, duress, or deception, or by a person who is legally incompetent or otherwise unable to judge the harmfulness of the conduct. N.J.S.A. 2C:2-10c.
Laws don’t assume. If something is not specifically stated as contradictory, it’s up to the jury to determine whether or not it applies. Eife did not give Jordan’s case the opportunity it needed to determine whether the language in the law could or should be sufficient to prosecute fraud as a means to sexually assault the victim. His failure underscores flagrant misconceptions about consent.
A victory, none-the-less
Tonight, I’m celebrating a milestone for Carnal Abuse by Deceit. It succeeded in opening society’s conversation about rape by fraud in the modern era.
Tonight, at 7 PM EST, NBC Dateline premieres their episode of The Mystery Man. The story chronicles a recent case of sexual assault by fraud committed in NJ. Problem is, there’s no NJ statute that makes conning a victim for sex a crime in The Garden State.
Tune in to learn more about “false personation” and how it’s used to defile and harm unsuspecting victims.
And, be sure to sign-on to the change.org petition to pass Legislation #3908, Sexual Assault by Fraud, submitted by Assemblyman Troy Singleton on November 14th. Your voice can make a huge difference!
I’ll be live-tweeting throughout the episode. My Twitter handle is @jm_short. I’ll be using the hashtags, #RapeByFraud and #Dateline.
Objections to penal code on sexual assault by fraud range from uninformed to downright bizarre:
- People should just be more careful,
- Boys will be boys,
- It’s harmless,
- It happens so frequently- half of society would end up in jail,
……… and on and on!
Here are some frequently raised objections, and why they simply don’t fly:
“Victims should be more careful.”
People with this objection fail to realize that sexual predators will specifically set out to lie and thwart detection. They go to great lengths to proffer and perpetuate sexual hoaxes. They deliberately harm one unsuspecting victim after another.
Rape by fraud happens to naive people, but it also happens to very astute victims who are not easily fooled. To some offenders, undermining the emotional armor that protects the most intelligent and savvy target is especially rewarding.
A victim’s “carefulness” can be undermined by an unscrupulous offender, and naivete is not a crime. Rape is.
“They didn’t know, so no crime was committed.”
All fraud takes place as the result of the victim being overcome by the offender’s vitiation of consent. But when the victim learns they were “had,” their feelings of defilement can be overwhelming. The same would be true of date rape in which the victim was drugged and not conscious when the rape actually took place.
No rape is less of a rape because the victim did not know that it was happening to them at the time.
“Rape by fraud is really not rape.”
The generic word, “rape” is globally accepted as “non-consented sexual penetration.” While different states call it by different names, sexual assault, sexual battery, sexual misconduct, etc, “rape” refers to sexually penetrating a victim who would not knowingly consent but for the vitiation of their consent by the offender. Because society balks at the use of the term “rape” when no violence occurs, however, it’s best to use a less glaring term for non-violent acts of rape.
A recent University of North Dakota survey indicates that approximately 1 out of 3 college men would rape if they thought there would be no consequences. This figure was arrived at when the act was described but not referred to as “rape.” When the word “rape” was introduced, however, the ratio dropped to 13%.
Rape is the crime of stealing sex from someone who would not otherwise give it to you.
“Saying “yes” means consent.”
Using fraud to secure a “yes” is sexual exploitation. In all human interaction, when someone defrauds you of your assets or dupes you into conduct of any sort, they are using the tool of “fraud” to take something from you. Your consent is considered totally ineffective under the law.
Model Penal Code- “Consent is ineffective when induced by force, duress or deception.”
“Rape by fraud laws would punish people for wearing padded bras, lifts in their shoes, or dying their hair.”
Balderdash! A person’s appearance is either pleasing to their sexual partner or not. An appearance enhancement neither masks the nature of the act itself nor the identity or intent of the offender.
Appearance enhancements can and should be disqualified as “fraud” in rape by fraud law.
“This law is just another way to make society more of a woman’s world and undermine maleness.”
I view that comment as one of the most sexist things I’ve ever heard. In the tug of war between misogyny and misandry, some feel that rape by fraud laws favor women. Women can be just as guilty of conducting rape by fraud as men, although more rapes occur to women than men.
Rape by fraud law would protect men against gold-diggers and curtail the transmission of life-altering illness that occurrs when a sexual predator lies to hide their health condition from someone of either sex.
The law is gender neutral and provides equal protection to both men and women.
“It goes on all the time. How could laws possibly be enforced?”
First off, it shouldn’t go on all the time, and that’s exactly why this law is so important. Once it becomes law, people will recognize sexual assault by fraud as abhorrent behavior.
The proofs needed to try a case are far more substantial than simply “he said, she said.” The police can’t arrest someone without proof of a claim, the Grand Jury can’t indict, and the victim would have to have made a reasonable effort to know the truth.
Willingly jumping into bed with someone upon first meeting them would not qualify as rape by fraud. Unless the victim can substantiate that the crime, indeed, was committed against them, in keeping with all criminal arrests, no prosecution would take place.
Any arrest would require substantial proof and the victim would have to have made a reasonable effort to know the truth
“People will fabricate they were raped after the fact because they simply want to damage the innocent person who’s dumped them.”
Fabrication can take place in any claim of wrong-doing. We don’t fail to enforce criminal law because people can misuse it. That’s what judges and juries are for; determining whether sufficient proof exists to pronounce the offender guilty. There are so many reasons why people don’t immediately come forward after a rape that it would take up an entire post. But when they do come forward, they need proof in order to press charges. A non-supported case of “he said, she said” would not be prosecuted, even though any act of swindling someone out of sex is a violation.
Significant proof is required when prosecuting any claim in every case. Sexual Assault by Fraud is no different.
“Violent rape is the only real rape.”
Our laws have long recognized that a violent assault against a victim’s sex organs is more heinous than other types of violent assault. If the offender used violence to break our arm, we would not call that rape. We recognize that there is something uniquely different about sexually violating a person. And there is nothing that can compare to the heinousness of violent rape.
But violence is one means to rape a victim. Our laws have also acknowledged that penetration of a person’s sex organs without their consent is “rape,” Date rape and statutory rape are good examples.They are forms of rape in which violence need not be present. The It’sOnUs Pledge states specifically, “Non-consensual sex is sexual assault.”
When the offender uses fraud to vitiate “knowing consent,” by any means, they are aware they are doing so, even though the victim is not. In all acts of rape, it is the actions of the actor that is the crime.
The tools by which an offender will sexually violate a victim include: violence, dope, intoxication, coercion, sex with someone under the age of consent or too mentally incapacitated to consent, and fraud, (dupllicity/deceit.)
Every means of vitiating a victim’s right to self determination to penetrate their sex organs is rape.
Why will people will continue to object?
With all of the reasons behind adoption of sexual assault by fraud law, some people will continue to oppose it. Any change in society’s “norms” takes getting used to. Often, those changes are initially met with disbelief and even ridicule. We’re seeing that in the outlandish comments people make. But there are other reasons many will continue to object. Here are a few……
1. They didn’t read or understand the law.
2. The media continues to stir up hysteria by incorrectly stating fictitious cases such as “the speed of my Lamborghini, blah, blah,” or “I’m Brad Pitt’s best friend.”
2. There are people who fail to appreciate and acknowledge that every human being’s body is sacrosanct. It’s a good idea to stay away from people who fail to do so. They’d have very little respect for your sexual autonomy,
3. Media’s portrayal of sex, and its constant bombardment of sexual imagery, creates the concept that sex is a prize, reward or entitlement. Sex has been depersonalized. It’s become a commodity. But sex is not a “thing”, and sexual sanctity is every person’s inherent right.
4. Adopting new legislation is up to legislators who count on making popular decisions to remain in office. And some legislators, judges, police officers and others, who pass or uphold the laws, can be just as guilty of rape by fraud as anyone else. An inability to grasp the criminality of rape by fraud tells us a great deal about that person.
6. The mindset that enables an offender to commit rape by fraud is a selfish, narcissistic perspective; one that puts individual desire above respect for another human being’s self determination. Doing so indicates their ability to devalue a victim for their own personal greed. People who object are supporting society’s continued acceptance of sexually deviant behavior. What does that say about that individual?
Let’s have a frank and open discussion
Anyone wishing to state an objection to sexual assault by fraud law can leave a comment here, and I’ll be happy to respond. Folks who’d like to lend their support are welcome to join in. Please address the issue in a respectful fashion. Hurling insults, foul language, personal attacks or other negative responses will result in removal of the comment.
Often people who were victimized by an emotional predator wonder how or why they’ll ever love again. “It’s just too dangerous,” and “I won’t survive another emotion bashing episode,” are common statements. Victims often isolate themselves from romantic interaction. For them, “being alone is better than being harmed.”
If this is your mindset, you’ve come to the right place. But prepare to hear some things about yourself, as well as some changes you need to make.
- YOU did nothing wrong. You were targeted by a predator because you have the capacity to forgive and love. The problem is that the person you choose was an exploiter, not a lover. And they selected you because they grasped that they could manipulate you through your devotion to them.
- Some people are incapable of bonding and loving. You need to avoid them. In order to do so, you will have to ditch your attraction to the superficial appeal we know as “charm,” and look more deeply into a person’s character. And you need to note whether their character repeats in all the corners of their life.
Just as people without emotional empathy will never develop it, people with emotional empathy will never lose it. It’s part of their wiring. Sometimes we confuse being “sensitive” with having “emotional empathy,” which is the key to conscience and morality. But they are not the same.
Anyone can be sensitive about their own condition. They can express heartfelt need for what they want. They can dupe you into feeling sorry for them over their past. But that’s still not “emotional empathy.” A person with “emotional empathy” will automatically have a knee-jerk reaction to the pain someone else experiences. They will put themselves in the other person’s shoes and be guided by their conscience.
Instant attraction only means that the object of your affection stirs your brain chemistry. It does not mean that they are a caring, wonderful human being. Being swept off your feet can readily lead to emotional trauma rather than the lasting, durable relationship you want. So here are a few “don’ts” about finding someone to love:
Don’t take anything you read on internet dating sites as gospel.
Everyone there is expressing the image they’d like to portray. But without verification, there could be countless lies behind their profile. Check IDs and Google anyone you meet online, no matter how badly they protest.
Don’t have sex with anyone until you’ve been introduced to their family and friends.
What’s the rush…. really? A meaningful relationship takes time and commitment. Afraid you’ll lose them if you don’t have sex with them? Guess what. That’s a person worth losing!
If you don’t live in the same town with their family, you can establish a connection through Skype or other resources. How does your love interest communicate with family? However it is, it should include you if they’re committed to making you a permanent part of their life. If they don’t communicate regularly with their family, it’s a very large, vigorously waving, red-flag.
Don’t believe that a man over 45 or a woman over 35 has NO children.
Unless they have a physical condition that prevents procreation, the statistical likelihood that they have no children is a rarity. If they have yet to introduce you to their children, they could be hiding a seriously checkered past.
Don’t look for “love” on dating sites that depict people as “wealthy” or “millionaires.”
Most people with assets want protection from “Gold-Diggers” and will not flaunt this aspect of their identity. Why would anyone try to attract a person who prioritizes their interest in finding “wealth?” Emotional predators lurk on these sites because the participants are tipping them off about what floats their boats. It gives them ammunition to produce an elaborate scam to snag you.
Don’t believe what people tell you about their “ex.”
You’re receiving that information through a very biased prism, one that is sure to make them look like the victim, not the offender. Even if they admit to infidelity, what does that tell you? It should alert you that they can justify betrayal, and YOU will be the recipient this time around.
So what’s a safer way to find true love?
First off, you need to feel that you’re okay without a relationship. You can stand on your own two feet and live a fulfilling, meaningful life. You can find joy in the activities and relationships you treasure. Allowing a person inside your inner circle is an intimacy you bestow on them.
Mankind was built to “couple.” We feel our best when we can express love and support for another human being. So inevitably, our interest in finding a significant other will resurface. Some “do’s” about engaging in romance once again are ..…
“Do” things that make your life worthwhile.
Enjoying your interests will bring you into the path of others who appreciate the same things. Whether it’s religion, art, cooking, the environment, sports, dancing, boating, etc., participate in groups that put you in the company of people who share your preferences.
Do look carefully at how they interact with others, not just you.
Do they “objectify” the people around them, the waiter, the valet, the clerk at the store? Or do they treat everyone with respect and appreciation?
Do they have a history of good-intentions?
It’s easy for wealthy people to give money to causes. It provides them with tax benefits. But do they give their time and pass along help and support when it’s needed? Have they been preoccupied with making money all their lives, or have they stopped along the way to make the world a better place?
Do evaluate what is truly important to you.
Sometimes, in looking at what attracted you to a predator, you’ll see you may have placed importance on superficial value. If you continue to put your interests in the wrong place, you’ll find the wrong person once again. You’ll need to readjust your priorities.
Albert Einstein coined two very relevant phrases that apply to finding new love after a predatory relationship:
Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results
A person who never made a mistake never tried anything new
So, forgive yourself for the choice you made. Recognize that you need to be far more circumspect in your future decisions… not because you were ‘wrong” but because character disordered people share our planet. Your mother never told you because she didn’t know. Mine put up with my abusive father for many decades. So, like me, you learned the hard way. Go forward, not backward with that knowledge.
While I’m quoting Einstein, there’s one more of his phrases that guides me in my efforts to enlighten people about rape by fraud and recover from it:
The world is a dangerous place to live; not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don’t do anything about it.
I hope you’ll help me spread the word!
First- we need to examine what a psychopath actually is…
According to Dr. Robert Hare in his highly acclaimed book, Without Conscience, not all psychopaths are the blood-thirsty ghouls we expect them to be. They don’t conduct themselves in ways that are obvious, like breathing fire out of their arm-pits. While they are evil at their core, for the most part, there are no blatant, tell-tale, physical signs.
I’ve heard people say they can tell a psychopath by their stare. But in the exposure I’ve had to individuals I believe are psychopathic, there was no fixed gaze to give them away.
Simply put, a psychopath is a person with the character disorder in which they lack emotional empathy, and therefore, they don’t develop a conscience. As a result, they can commit harmful acts against others with no degree of caring, concern, or remorse.
The Hare Psychopathy Checklist measures their level of harmfullness. But just because they don’t score at the top of the range, does not mean they’re not a psychopath.
Upbringing, not conscience, can deter them from ghoulish behavior. A character disordered child who is abused is more likely to become a heinous deviant than one who is raised in a more supportive environment. A child from an otherwise normal upbringing, is more likely to become a white-collar criminal who lies and cheats, rather than one who conducts unspeakable violence.
Psychopaths often go undetected because their early family life provided them sufficient knowledge about societal expectations to enable them to fit-in. But they are not guided by morality, virtue, or concern for their fellow man. Instead, they are only reigned-in by their fear of discovery or consequences.
How did they get that way?
Since prison settings provide access to a seemingly large volume of psychopaths, their populations are often the subjects for research. But this approach gives us a skewed sense of the frequency of encountering psychopaths in our daily lives.
The rough estimate of the ratio of psychopaths is approximately 4% of the population. But they conduct themselves in a serial fashion and; therefore, harm far more than 4% of mankind.
Modern mental health professionals suspect a genetic link to a pre-disposition to psychopathy. Its existence does not equate to every child of a psychopath becoming a psychopath. Rather, the child of a psychopath is “at-risk” for becoming a psychopath.
What passes along in DNA?
Our brain chemistry makes mankind trusting and caring. The principal neurotransmitter that serves as a foundation for conscience is thought to be, (according to Dr. Paul Zak in The Moral Molecule,) oxytocin. Our genes control our levels of oxytocin and our reaction to it can be shaped through early childhood development.
With normally functioning oxytocin receptors, we experience early bonding and develop emotional empathy, the knee-jerk reaction to the welfare of others. Without oxytocin, or with early developed negativity toward oxytocin, our ability to bond and feel concern for another person’s welfare becomes compromised.
How can we tell whether our child has empathy or not?
If your six year old or older child:
- is indifferent to the pain or problems another person exhibits, including their siblings, or you,
- throws tantrums when they don’t get their way
- puts the safety of others or animals at risk,
- is a bully,
- is continuously bullied,
- exhibits oppositional/defiant behavior
- is excessively impulsive,
- experiences phobias,
- has a love affair with weapons
- commits bodily harm against themselves or others
…..they may be showing early signs of character disorder.
Mental health professionals don’t label children “psychopathic.” Instead, they use the terms, “conduct disorder,” “behavior disorder,” or “emotionally disturbed.” Any of these diagnoses could signal development into character disorder as an adult.
What can I do to correct the problem?
Are they responsive to cuddling, caring and warmth? Are your attempts at boundary setting conveying love or making them fearful?
According to Dr. Liane Leedom in her ground-breaking book, Just Like His Father, children who are at-risk of becoming psychopaths need an extremely nurturing environment with significant levels of parental warmth. Devote time laughing and being joyous with your at-risk child. Keep as much acrimony from affecting them as possible, and try to reduce the level of stress in your home environment. Abandonment of an at-risk child, by either parent, can have a devastating affect on their development.
If your child reaches the age of six, and their morality is stuck at self-centered, get professional help for them. Involve them in activities that promote sharing and caring like volunteering, helping others, and by providing religious supports. If you are single, spend time with couples who embody cooperation, respect and a loving relationship.
When will I know the results?
Most parents find the teen years trying. But even teenagers will express respect for their parents. Character disordered kids will believe that rules are made to be broken. Teenaged impulsivity can take the form of drugs or alcohol abuse, fighting, truancy, promiscuity and juvenile delinquency. Usually, by their mid twenties, with independence, permanent character becomes obvious.
Your child’s development into psychopathy is impacted by genetics and experiences that can be totally out of your control. But knowing that a child is at-risk, understanding the genetic link to the disorder, can help you create the most supportive environment to deter them from violence. Nothing will impart a conscience to a psychopath.
If you are the unfortunate parent of a character disordered son or daughter, hopefully, you can find peace in knowing you did the best you could with the resources and knowledge you had at the time.
There seems to be a very large misconception about what rape by fraud is, and what emotional rape is. And often they take place together. When this occurs, it’s hard for the victim to separate which is which.
Tricking a person to steal their love
and involve them in a relationship.
Rape by Fraud:
Tricking a person to steal sex
How emotional rape works
Being pranked for a relationship is emotional rape. This term does not denote a “sexual act” Rather, it describes the sense of having your highest emotion, which is love, stolen from you.
In emotional rape, a person creates a hoax about their character, or what their intentions are, and perpetuates that hoax over time. The unknowing victim provides love and caring that is undeserved and will feel violated when they learn the truth. Cases of emotional rape can lead to engagement and marriage with a partner who is not what they pretend to be.
When the victim discovers the truth, they may not react as society expects. People with high levels of morality and the brain chemistry that induces attachments will continue to feel bound by the bond of love that was established. They’ll experience the toxic glue of a Trauma Bond, also known as a Betrayal Bond, that keeps them feeling the chemical ties created by the neurotransmitters in their brain, enabling our species to “couple.” Please use this link to determine if a Betrayal Bond is affecting you. And refer to Dr. Patrick Carnes’ book, Betrayal Bond, Breaking Free of Exploitive Relationships for further information.
Separating from an emotional predator can take considerable time and toxic interaction in the relationship. Often victims will defend their mate even though society will see their behavior as misguided. People without a deep-rooted sense of bonding will have an easier time breaking off the relationship. They’ll react more immediately to the realization of their situation. Victims who were previously abused, or whose moral code of conduct creates a sense of unconditional love, will be more forgiving.
How rape by fraud works
Rape by fraud is an actual, physical act of rape. Sexual assault or sexual contact takes place when a person is engaged in an act of sexual penetration without their freely given, knowledgeable and informed agreement…. consent. Defrauding a person of the physical act of sex vitiates their “consent” for sex, and is therefore punishable in some states. Tennessee and Alabama have the most direct laws in dealing with offenders who defraud victims for acts of sexual penetration.
Model penal code states that “consent is INEFFECTIVE if induced by force, duress or deception.” Therefore, a person who is sexually penetrated as a result of deception, is being physically raped.
This form of rape is similar in trauma to being drugged or intoxicated to vitiate consent. Violence did not occur to overwhelm the victim in any of these forms of sexual assault. Instead the victim was outwitted.
Other forms of criminal “outwitting.”
If the offender pretended to be the valet in front of a restaurant, took the man’s keys and drove off with his car, we would also recognize the act as auto theft; even though the man willingly handed over his keys and didn’t realize he was being robbed in the moment.
The first act was theft accomplished by violence. The second was theft accomplished by fraud. The offender would be charged differently for the violent act and sentenced more harshly, but both are criminal offenses.
Distinctions in charging the offender with a rape crime
All forms of rape should be punished in every state. If the person were violently overwhelmed, their act of rape would warrant a more “aggravated” level of charge. The sexual assaults that do not involve violence to overwhelm the victim are a lesser offense. But all acts of rape, or sexual assault, should be punished.
Is emotional rape a crime?
Emotional rape is morally reprehensible. It steals a lifetime from the victim. It embroils them in marriages that are not what the victim perceives. When it generates offspring, those relationships exist for a lifetime, and often in a fashion that shatters lives. But is it a criminally punishable offense? Unfortunately, it is not penalized in any state in the US. It could; however, become a civil matter if there were sufficient awareness of this pattern of wrong doing.
You will get a much clearer grasp of the distinction between emotional rape and rape by fraud by reading Carnal Abuse by Deceit, which accurately conveys these issues in a real-world setting.
Every act of physically and sexually penetrating a person without their freely given, knowledgeable and informed agreement, #FGKIA, is and should be punishable throughout the US!
A victim’s reaction to trauma
You awake to a very large, strong man covering your mouth with one hand, making it difficult to breathe, let alone scream. In the other hand, he’s clenching a knife millimeters from your face. Terror seizes your entire body and you react…. but how?
Fight or flight is the response society expects in violent attacks. Your amygdala springs into action engaging with your hypothalamus and pituitary, instantly flooding you with hormones to protect your sustainability:
- Adrenalin arouses you to your circumstance.
- Cortisol provides you with uncommon energy.
- Opioids act like morphine to temporarily blind you to your pain.
- Oxytocin attempts to stabilize your emotions.
Totally apart from your conscious control, you may be like millions of sexual assault survivors who freeze, some in a form of temporary paralysis called tonic immobility, and others in an effort to “go along to get along” known as fawning. It is estimated that as many as 50% of rape victims will respond by freezing.
The impacts of neurology on seeking justice
Our current laws labor under the misconception that victims will either fight with all their might to fend off brutality, or do everything in their power to free themselves. Absent evidence of doing either or both, police assume that the victim’s crime report is a lie. Approximately 86% of rapes, even those supported by a rape kit, do not make their way from the intake officer to the Prosecutor for this reason. Yet data reported by the National Center for the Prosecution of Violence Against Women indicates only 2-8% of rape accusations are false.
A natural phenomenon
The most widely
known is the
opossum, which is why “playing dead” is also referred to as “playing opossum.” Mammals are wired with the option to look and appear dead to their attacker for protection.
Additional neurological impacts on the victim’s post-rape “affect”
Because of their involuntary, reflexive reactions to inescapable danger, victims experience self blame and question their own inability to fight back or why they stopped resisting. Their personal sense of shame can inhibit their reporting the offense.
During rape, the cocktail of trauma-stimulated hormones blocks the ability of the brain’s hippocampus to organize and store thought. Many rape victims, who are interrogated shortly after their trauma, have yet to recover cognition. Investigator who do not understand this condition suspect that the victim is inventing the story as they speak, when they are actually attempting to puzzle together disparate pieces of the events that their brain’s hormonal overload blocked from encoding.
Their “affect” or appearance, may not seem as emotionally charged as one would expect after a heinous assault. They could remain under the influence of those same opioids that deterred their reaction and dulled their senses during the crime.
Undermining self esteem
Victims who freeze struggle with an innate sense of guilt. Their response defied their own personal expectation that if something frightening took place, they would fight to the death or flee. We go through life taking comfort in the concept that we’ll be able to protect ourselves in life or death decisions, and doing nothing seems shameful, even though it very well may have saved our lives. Our brains are wired to react before our reasoning ability kicks in.
Penal laws on sex crimes have yet to grasp the impact of tonic immobility and fawning. Victims are seen as compliant rather than resistant. Our laws focus on the behavior of the victim to determine whether consent took place instead of determining whether the accused used malicious influence to dominate them. Jurors are tasked with determining consent by what the victim said or did, regardless that they were terrorized into compliant behavior.
Watch this TEDx Talk for the key to combating sexual assault!
Inspiration for this post came from information I received from a woman who comments under the name “Semi” on US Weekly. Unless otherwise linked, the source for the data and statistics is The Neurobiology of Sexual Assault, written and presented by Dr. Rebecca Campbell, Professor of Psychology at Michigan State University. I wholeheartedly encourage everyone to watch her scholarly presentation.
Why victims suffer this disabling anxiety condition
PTSD is normally associated with warfare
My father fought in the Philippines during World War II. One hot, dark, buggy night, he woke up to find a Japanese soldier squatting over him, about to thrust a bayonet into his neck. I knew better than to ever ask him the fate of that soldier. The fact that he came home to our family was all we needed to know.
Whenever my dad was aroused from sleep, he’d awaken with a start. I’m sure that was only a small example of how PTSD affected him. But it was visible to me, even as a small child.Today, society readily understands that combat soldiers can suffer from PTSD. It was a far less public discussion in my father’s time.
I never expected that I would encounter any type of danger that could create the disorder for me, but I was wrong.
The emotional causes of PTSD
Modern day health professionals have concluded that emotionally shattering experiences undermine our sense of invulnerability and cause PTSD. People naturally assume that life is both benevolent and meaningful. And we consider ourselves to be worthy beings. An encounter with rape by fraud can shred every vestige of our beliefs about both life and our place in it. It undermines our value system.
If this happened to you, depending on the length of time the hoax took place, you built expectations that were predictable. Learning that everything you valued was nothing more than a house of cards crushed your sense of safety and well-being. And the notion that you were used as an instrument of your own demise was especially crushing. It is why Socrates said that “sex by persuasion” as he called rape by fraud, is particularly compelling because it undermines the character of the victim. Recognition of the heinous nature of this behavior spans centuries. It’s nothing new.
While rape by fraud victims do not undergo the brutal torment of violence, the blow to their emotional makeup can be devastating. Their injuries are far more severe than the trifling stupidities that people hurl their way…. “Just get over it,” “So what,” “Find a decent guy.” And even worse, “You just misunderstood.” In many ways, the lack of validation people hurl at victims serves to deepen their despair. They not only have to deal with the betrayal that affects them at their core, but also with the abandoning mindset of the very people they count on for support.
Some symptoms of PTSD include:
- Memories that are triggered by daily events, making you tremendously sad.
- Sleeplessness, the inability to turn off the record running through your brain
- Loss of interest in your daily life.
- Hermit behavior, unwillingness to go out and face possible reminders
- Irritability and anger over small incidents.
Victims who experience rape by fraud should seek professional help to recover. Just as a soldier needs therapy to improve, no one should try to tackle PTSD on their own. If you can’t afford a private therapist, contact your local hospital and find out if they have a low cost mental health clinic that can help you. Reach out to RAINN, the Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network, for information and support.