How Far Can Abused Women Go To Protect Themselves? (Gender Bias in the Legal System) by E. Flock
I was horrified and upset to see illustrated in this report the huge double standard between how men and women are treated legally if and when they use self defense – women come out being treated unfairly, while men do not.
This happens to be a very long read, but I encourage the reader to click the link to the read the entire piece.
I will only be providing some excerpts from the page, not the entire page, on my blog.
[Long story involving a woman named Brittany who was doing a favor for her drug-addicted friend, Todd.
Todd phoned Brittany claiming to be stranded and without a place to stay, so she picked him up and allowed him to stay at her place.
Once he was at Brittany’s place, he brutally raped and beat her, and told her if she told the police or anyone else that he would murder her.
Things escalated more, when Brittany managed to warn her family about Todd keeping her hostage all day.
Brittany’s brother Chris confronted Todd, Brittany had to shoot and kill Todd to save her brother Chris from being killed by Todd.
Brittany called 911 to get Todd, who was dying on the floor, some medical help, and the police showed up to her home.
If I recall correctly, the police took photos of Brittany once they got there, and there was, I believe, a medical test performed on her at a hospital, where medical professionals logged the extent of injuries Brittany had suffered at Todd’s hands. I think there was a rape test performed as well.
The point being, either the police or hospital staff (or both) had PROOF that Brittany had been raped and beaten by Todd.
When all was said and done, the legal system and the court appointed psychiatrists and psychologists then proceeded to blame Brittany and to treat her like a lunatic and a liar.
During one appointment with a mental health professional, the doctor laughed in amusement when she told him how Todd mocked her voice when she was begging him to stop raping her.
The article goes on to say that in states that have a “stand your ground law,” the legal side always believes the men who say they were acting in self defense, and these men get off.
However, women who claim self defense are thrown in jail, they are not believed. Judges won’t allow their claims of domestic violence be brought up in court cases, even though the women killed their husbands or boyfriends because they were being beaten literally to death.]
…Initially, Chris and Brittany [who are siblings] told the police that he had killed Todd.
Both of them believed that a woman who had defended herself against violence would never get a fair trial in Jackson County, where Stevenson is situated.
“I hate to say this, but, Jackson County, they’re a little bit behind on the times,” Chris told me, arguing that, if law enforcement had known that it was Brittany who fired the gun, they would not have taken her for a rape-kit examination until it was too late.
Women, he said, “get the short end of the stick.”