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Allegations of rape: Why are police asking victims for their phones?

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Why are the police asking victims of rape to hand over their mobile phones for the police to peruse through?

 

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-48086244

 

I've been listening to the radio, police have even been asking rape victims where they didn't know their attackers have in effect had to "choose between privacy and justice". 

It seems to be a backward step to me. 

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Surely if the victim is telling the truth they wouldn't mind police looking for ANY evidence.

I wouldn't mind at all.

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6 minutes ago, Mister M said:

Why are the police asking victims of rape to hand over their mobile phones for the police to peruse through?

 

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-48086244

 

I've been listening to the radio, police have even been asking rape victims where they didn't know their attackers have in effect had to "choose between privacy and justice". 

It seems to be a backward step to me. 

If the justice system can ensure that the falsely accused are not punished in any way then we won't need this. 

 

It can't so all evidence wherever it may be needs to be searched for. 

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6 minutes ago, francypants said:

Surely if the victim is telling the truth they wouldn't mind police looking for ANY evidence.

I wouldn't mind at all.

For those women who knew their attacker prior to the rape, perhaps. Then there is the sense of violation after being raped that the victims on the radio spoke about; as well as the length of time the information is kept for (one woman was told it would be 100 years by the police officer).

There was definitely a sense from the lawyers who specialise in rape cases that this latest move could be seen as a way to analyse the previous sexual history of the person, as if that was relevant.

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I wouldn't have a problem with the police looking through my smartphone, although they don't have a good record at keeping other peoples secrets.

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Whether I knew the attacker or not would make no difference to me.   I'd be happy for the police to look out for ANYTHING .     I've no problem with it at all.

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I read on the BBC article that one of the guys that had been falsely accused of rape by a woman before had been described by this same woman as "a really kind guy", someone she loved, and had mentioned that she had rape fantasies...so the defence was able to prove that in fact her cry of rape, was complete nonsense.

 

As people have said, you can't get the whole story from only one side.

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1 hour ago, Mister M said:

For those women who knew their attacker prior to the rape, perhaps. Then there is the sense of violation after being raped that the victims on the radio spoke about; as well as the length of time the information is kept for (one woman was told it would be 100 years by the police officer).

There was definitely a sense from the lawyers who specialise in rape cases that this latest move could be seen as a way to analyse the previous sexual history of the person, as if that was relevant.

It should be made available - anything that could be used as evidence should be made available.

 

there are instances of people being wrongly accused and put through hell. These people are also victims.

 

i totally agree it would be wrong for any information from phones to be wrongly used against a rape victim but that is for

the judge and jury to decide.

 

 

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2 hours ago, Pyrotequila said:

I read on the BBC article that one of the guys that had been falsely accused of rape by a woman before had been described by this same woman as "a really kind guy", someone she loved, and had mentioned that she had rape fantasies...so the defence was able to prove that in fact her cry of rape, was complete nonsense.

 

As people have said, you can't get the whole story from only one side.

Absolutely- everyone wants rapists convicted.

 

no one should want an innocent person to be wrongly accused/convicted.

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12 hours ago, Mister M said:

Why are the police asking victims of rape to hand over their mobile phones for the police to peruse through?

 

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-48086244

 

I've been listening to the radio, police have even been asking rape victims where they didn't know their attackers have in effect had to "choose between privacy and justice". 

It seems to be a backward step to me. 

It's an odd one.  They're claiming it's because they've recently had a bunch of cases collapse because the police and CPS failed to share relevant information with the defence.

But that wasn't due to a lack of the victims phones, it was due to the police and cps thinking they could get a conviction if they buried some evidence that exonerated the accused.


So the stated reason sounds like a smokescreen to me.

12 hours ago, francypants said:

Surely if the victim is telling the truth they wouldn't mind police looking for ANY evidence.

I wouldn't mind at all.

It's pretty intrusive to demand a victim hand over their phone.  Phones contain all kinds of personal information, private messages in all kinds of format, potentially they contain intimate photos, drunken conversations or confessions, all kinds of things that are nothing to do with the reported crime and extremely personal.

10 hours ago, Pyrotequila said:

I read on the BBC article that one of the guys that had been falsely accused of rape by a woman before had been described by this same woman as "a really kind guy", someone she loved, and had mentioned that she had rape fantasies...so the defence was able to prove that in fact her cry of rape, was complete nonsense.

 

As people have said, you can't get the whole story from only one side.

The fact was that the police had this information anyway and it was a police/cps decision to try to hide it from the defence.  It was nothing to do with having access to the alleged victims phone.

10 hours ago, makapaka said:

It should be made available - anything that could be used as evidence should be made available.

 

there are instances of people being wrongly accused and put through hell. These people are also victims.

 

i totally agree it would be wrong for any information from phones to be wrongly used against a rape victim but that is for

the judge and jury to decide.

 

 

That doesn't sound remotely balanced, the victim isn't supposed to be on trial.

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53 minutes ago, Cyclone said:

It's an odd one.  They're claiming it's because they've recently had a bunch of cases collapse because the police and CPS failed to share relevant information with the defence.

But that wasn't due to a lack of the victims phones, it was due to the police and cps thinking they could get a conviction if they buried some evidence that exonerated the accused.


So the stated reason sounds like a smokescreen to me.

It's pretty intrusive to demand a victim hand over their phone.  Phones contain all kinds of personal information, private messages in all kinds of format, potentially they contain intimate photos, drunken conversations or confessions, all kinds of things that are nothing to do with the reported crime and extremely personal.

The fact was that the police had this information anyway and it was a police/cps decision to try to hide it from the defence.  It was nothing to do with having access to the alleged victims phone.

That doesn't sound remotely balanced, the victim isn't supposed to be on trial.

What about the defendant's right to a fair trial?  

 

You can bet your backside that the police and prosecution team will trawl through the defendant's entire personal history, trawl through all their personal and intimate photographs, trawl through all their drunken messages and coversations to build up their case without problem.

 

It's an obvious balance to ensure that the same level of scrutiny should also be applied to the alleged victim reporting such a serious crime. 

 

That alleged defendant is just as innocent as the alleged victim until such point until proven guilty of a crime.  

 

Unpleasant as it may be for an alleged victim the cold hard fact it is anything to do with investigating rape allegation IS personal.  However, that does not mean that one side should have privilege of maintaining their private mobile phone data particularly when such data could be key to an accused's defence

 

In modern times, a persons mobile phone contains their entire life and there is no reason why an accuser bringing such a serious crime allegation against a defendant should not be compelled to give full disclosure to the police. 

 

It should quite rightly be for them to decide what is relevant to the investigation.  

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I agree with what francypants says in post 2.  

 

A few years ago I was told by a policeman, that it’s not uncommon for a woman to say she has been rapped to get revenge on her boyfriend because he finished the relationship.

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