In a story that only keeps getting more wretched, a young woman in Marion, South Carolina answered the door not long after being in a car crash. When she let in the police officer, Tyrone Reed, expecting that it was with reference to the crash, he raped her.
On September 25, the victim's boyfriend reported the attack, and by her account, the woman was violated again by the police.
Lt. Farmer Blue and Betty Gause showed up to investigate the case, at which point they allegedly improperly seized evidence. The woman said, "I showed him the trash where I know the officer that assaulted me was standing and I said, ‘Here's the tissue,' and Blue got the tissue out of the trash can and he took that evidence with him. I never saw (an evidence bag). I asked him what he was going to do with it and he said, ‘He got this.'"
The woman went to the hospital, where she was denied the customary sexual assault victims' advocate, and waited for hours. Later, the police officers returned, saying, "When [state law enforcement] comes in and they find anything wrong with your story, they are taking you to prison. You're going to prison for five years. They said, ‘Your story is all over the place. We talked to our officer and his story sounds consistent. You don't look like a rape victim.'" They also said that she didn't look like a rape victim, because she wasn't "balled up in a corner, shivering," and because she had changed her clothes after the incident and not washed (this part is unclear).
"I said, ‘I don't know what a rape victim looks like. I never thought this would happen to me,'" the victim told SCNow.
Terrified that she would go to jail and be separated from her daughter, the woman said she was coerced to sign a statement that didn't even make sense: "Though I didn't agree or consent to it (it) was not rape."
Reed has been suspended pending an investigation, and hasn't been charged with a crime. Meanwhile, the Women's Rights blog at Change.org has started a petition to compel the Marion police department to suspend the other officers involved.
Image via Mikhail Zahranichny/Shutterstock