“Police say this woman could’ve probably used better judgement, but that doesn’t change the fact she was taken somewhere against her will and forced into a very bad situation.”
That is the opening sentence in an article for KOLD News 13 about the sexual assault of a woman in the Phoenix, AZ, area.* To be unprofessional and slang-y myself, is this for real?!? Were there no editors on staff to review it before it was posted? Or is it a joke? Assuming it’s a real article…
Spelling and grammar errors aside, blatant victim blaming here and later in the article (“Granted, authorities say the victim could’ve likely avoided this had she not asked a complete stranger for a ride, but that doesn’t make this man’s alleged actions right.”) is unprofessional, unhelpful, and harmful. Really, what is the point? Who does that help?
<sarcasm>Oh and thanks for conceding that his actions weren’t right even though she was sooo stupid for getting in that car with him. Everyone knows the second a woman gets help from a stranger she’s bound to get assaulted. </sarcasm>
The facts I can glean from this mess of an article: a young woman was at a Circle K convenience store at 3 a.m., looking for a ride home. Someone offered her a ride. She went with him and he allegedly sexually assaulted her in a lot nearby. There is no information about how she got away or if she’s okay, just a plea to report anyone who looks like him because “he does pose a threat to other members of the community.”
If a man had asked for a ride home at 3 a.m. and the driver sexually assaulted him, would the opening sentence of the article have blamed him for getting in the car? Maybe (thinking of Mathew Shepherd) but it is less likely.
Why doesn’t she have the right to try to find a ride home if she needs one, which she clearly did? Oh yeah, she’s female. She shouldn’t be out alone at night without a man to protect her…
I’m appalled by the journalism throughout the article and I hope she’s okay!
*I wouldn’t define this incident as street harassment, but I think it’s relevant to the victim blaming women may experience when street harassers target them