Political Rape Culture
In 1999, I was abducted off the street in Wellington by a man with a knife. I endured his attack. I reported it to police. I was lucky (bizarre statement considering, you think?). The investigating detective assigned my case was fantastic. Completely non-judgemental, completely dedicated and endured my ranting for months, he certainly did enough of his own there were many frustrations in his role. We had a very good professional relationship and I am forever grateful for him. He was more therapy than I think he ever knew as I worked through the issue.
There were enough cameras in the area and this repeat offender was known to police, and after a media appeal a witness came forward. All was set to go, they knew where he was. A warrant was issued and a police unit was assembled, led by my detective who was keeping me informed of every step. He phoned me, very apologetic. The team had been reassigned, according to my detective, due to ‘political orders’ as the murder victim’s family had political connections. The police were working through, as usual they knew and were building their case, but it wasn’t happening fast enough apparently.
“Gavin Dash was considered a high-achiever with a very successful life ahead of him… Finally in February and March 2000, the police spoke to Gates on two separate occasions and the investigation was beefed-up. 18 investigators were quickly allocated to the case.” http://www.crime.co.nz/c-files.aspx?ID=5657
We kept contact, with little progress as the offender disappeared. Several months later the detective phoned me again, he was incredibly angry with the system and he had horrendous news. The offender had abducted another woman and hurt her really badly, really, really badly. There was little point in continuing with my case, we knew the media would crucify me if they got hold of the story and get this – me not pursuing meant the other woman’s case would have a better chance of being prosecuted. That is how utterly fucked up the system and the rape culture is in NZ.
The offender was prosecuted and spent time in jail. I know where he is and I know where he works. It is the most bizzare thing that a woman’s so-called promiscuity is called out much more often than a man’s rape history. He’s probably moved on; he posts lamenting the loss of his mother. I wonder if she knew her son? He was only convicted once, but the police knew of his history of sexual offending. It really is that hard to prosecute.
This was 20 years ago, and a ‘proper’ sexual assault case, you know, one of those ‘stranger in the dark’ cases where the victim shouldn’t have been out after dark, or alone, but most have sympathy with this one. I have half a dozen ‘moderate’ sexual assault stories and hundreds of ‘minor’ sexual assault stories – but no one has time for that.
Imagine being a victim of a powerful person, with powerful contacts in an organisation you want to protect, but you want the offender held to account and to stop what they have been doing, not only to you but you’ve found out it is to others too, many others.
I am really, really fucking angry and really, really fucking disgusted. I have never been so revolted by the actions of political actors as I currently am. I’m also disgusted by the silence of way too many of their supporters and the others who are defending this shit. If you for a moment believe this wasn’t a cover-up for party political purposes, unfriend me because I don’t want to know you. I have standards.