Everyday Victim Blaming

challenging institutional disbelief around domestic & sexual violence and abuse

In the News: on Ian Watkins, ‘grooming’, and Rape Crisis Scotland

Rape Crisis Scotland express worry after sharp rise in number of sexual assaults reported, by Andrew Learmonth

RAPE Crisis Scotland say they’re concerned at new Police Scotland figures showing a 46 per cent increase in the number of rapes against women over 16.

A summary report to go in front of the Scottish Police Authority later today shows, rape, as a whole, up 23 per cent, to 561 for the first quarter of 2017-2018, between April and June.

Indecent and sexual assault is up 7.6 per cent to 1153.

Though non-recent rapes, anything older than a year ago, account for 38.7 per cent of all those recorded, the figures makes for grim reading. ...

The 'boyfriend model' of abuse is not restricted to grooming gangs via @ConversationUK

The “boyfriend model” of abuse, seen in the Newcastle sex exploitation trial is not new or rare. All perpetrators exploit the vulnerabilities of girls and young women, whether they are boyfriends, partners, husbands or members of a gang.

Former chief crown prosecutor Nazir Afzal is now leading calls for urgent research into the “boyfriend model” – whereby a vulnerable person is manipulated to believe they are in a loving relationship with their abuser – as it has been at the heart of a string of national grooming scandals. But I think there is a more urgent need for honesty, as many women and girls are suffering abuse in their relationships every day. This may not make it into the news but it’s there and it needs to be addressed.

In Newcastle, 18 adults were convicted of rape and other offences against girls and young women aged between 13 and 25. The adults entrapped the youngsters into ongoing relationships, before exploiting them. Afzal sees parallels with the infamous Rochdale grooming case, which he oversaw as chief crown prosecutor in the northwest. His calls for research have been supported by Labour MP Sarah Champion who says research is needed to investigate why “hundreds of Pakistani men” have been convicted. Indeed, her stand on the subject led her to resign from the front bench this week after a newspaper article she wrote on the subject attracted criticism. ...

Police missed chances to stop paedophile Ian Watkins, says report, by Steven Morris

Police missed a string of opportunities over a period of four years to stop the rock star Ian Watkins from committing depraved sex attacks on children and babies, a watchdog has concluded.

Six people came forward to make allegations against Watkins, the lead singer of Lostprophets, before he was finally arrested and jailed for 35 years, the report from the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) found.

On one occasion a simple check of a mobile phone owned by one of Watkins’s ex-girlfriends when she made a complaint about him would have revealed a message that spelled out his interest in sex with children, the IPCC said. ...

IPCC investigators found that one detective had pointed out that any police action against Watkins would attract “huge publicity”. The same officer appeared sceptical about one allegation that surfaced just as Lostprophets had released a new album and been booked in for high-profile festivals. Following another allegation, the officer reported that “due to his fame” Watkins had had “a number of fans and ex-girlfriends making allegations that when investigated are false”. ....


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