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University of Virginia rape case shows impacts of false allegations

It was the piece in the Rolling Stone that caught the attention of the nation. A reporter followed the story of a young woman that claimed to be the victim of a fraternity gang rape on the campus of the University of Virginia. The resulting piece, "A Rape on Campus," hit newsstands at the end of 2014.

Why did the piece catch the public's attention?

The piece in the Rolling Stone is noted for its beginning. It starts with a graphic description of the alleged rape. The victim sets the scene at a fraternity house and paints a horrifying tale. A tale that is so descriptive and so horrifying that it has all the elements of a Hollywood story.

Turns out, the flow of the story was due to the fact that it was fictitious.

Thankfully, it appears the story involved fictional assailants. Unfortunately, the false tale still had its victims.

Who was injured by false allegations involving fictitious rapists?

The article provides an example of the many impacts of false allegations of sexual assault. A recent report in The Washington Post discussed these impacts, noting that the article destroyed the reputation of an administrator on campus responsible for overseeing sexual violence cases.

The administrator filed suit against the Rolling Stone and its parent company, alleging defamation. Ultimately, the jury held in favor of the administrator.

What can others charged with sexual assault learn from this case?

Those who are falsely accused of sexual assault are not alone. It is important that you take the charges seriously, not just for the ramifications the allegations will have on you but for the impact they could have on others around you as well.

You have options. Defenses are available. Contact an experienced rape defense attorney to better ensure your legal rights are protected.

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