sexual assault | KUOW News and Information

sexual assault

Three months after he received a lenient punishment for sexually assaulting an unconscious woman at Stanford University, Brock Turner left the Santa Clara County Main Jail on Friday morning. He served half of a six-month sentence that drew a furious public response.

It sounds like a crazy idea. Convince a survivor of sexual assault to tell her story by filming herself with a fire-breathing dragon imposed on her face.

That's what Indian journalist Yusuf Omar did. He discovered that Snapchat, a mobile app that allows users to create photo or video "stories" that disappear after 24 hours, can be used to document a victim's first-person account while obscuring his or her identities.

Its built-in "filters" — illustrated or animated digital overlays — can transform a subject's face into anything from a flower child to a puppy.

The California Assembly unanimously passed a measure that requires a prison sentence for anyone convicted of sexually assaulting an unconscious person.

A Tennessee jury has found former Vanderbilt football player Brandon Vandenburg guilty of multiple counts of aggravated rape and aggravated sexual battery in a case that stems from the 2013 gang rape of a woman he had been dating.

Bill Radke speaks with Vancouver Sun columnist Vaughn Palmer about British Columbia Premier Christy Clark speaking out about her experience with sexual violence. Clark is saying it's time to break the silence. 

The California judge who issued what critics called a lenient sentence to a former Stanford University swimmer convicted of sexual assault has been removed from hearing an unrelated sexual assault case.

A Banksy piece in Boston. Photo taken in 2010.
FLICKR PHOTO/CHRIS DEVERS HTTP://BIT.LY/1SIPWMB (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

It started with a woman named Deja Stwalley, who claimed to be a porn recruiter. 

This recruiter reached out to young women, ages 19 and 20.  

When the U.S. government released its tally of sexual violence cases on college campuses under review in 2014, Stanford wasn't on the list. But in the new list that's out this month, Stanford has the most cases, with five.

The notorious assault that's been making headlines is not among the cases under federal review.

The father of Brock Turner, who was sentenced last week for sexually assaulting an unconscious woman at Stanford University, reportedly says his son is being punished for "20 minutes of action."

But others, including the Santa Clara District Attorney Jeff Rosen, say Turner, who was a top swimmer at Stanford, got off easy when he was sentenced to six months in county jail and three years' probation. Turner was convicted in March on three felony counts. Prosecutors had sought a sentence of six years in prison.

Courtesy of Jeff Emtman

Bill Radke speaks with Bethany Denton and Jeff Emtman about their story about the sexually violent predators who reside in the special commitment center on McNeil Island in Washington state.

Renewed controversy over heavy American military presence on the Japanese island of Okinawa swirled as President Obama arrived in Japan for the G7 summit. Just a week earlier, a former U.S. Marine allegedly raped and killed a local Okinawa woman, triggering protests on the island.

A judge in Pennsylvania ruled Tuesday that there is sufficient evidence for a sexual assault case against comedian Bill Cosby to move to trial.

The arraignment is set for July, Bobby Allyn of member station WHYY reports.

In 2009, Emily Vorland went to Iraq with the Army for a year, hoping it would lead to a career in special operations. That dream was derailed not by the enemy, but by a superior officer, who started sexually harassing her.

"I said no and then reported it. And my direct chain of command relieved him of his position. However, it was three months later when the retaliation started," she says.

The man in charge of Washington’s island-lock-up for sexual predators has resigned after two-and-a-half years on the job. Mark Strong submitted his resignation Friday as CEO of the Special Commitment Center on McNeil Island.

In India, rape is illegal. And the definition of what constitutes "rape" was widened only recently in response to a horrific fatal assault in New Delhi in 2012. Forced penetration by any object in any orifice is now a crime.

Despite this law, some men in India can have sex with a woman against her will. That's because Parliament chose to exempt husbands.

This decision — which makes India one of 49 nations that don't criminalize marital rape — has come under fire from women's rights advocates around the globe.

In this Sept. 17, 2014 file photo, Colorado-based author Jon Krakauer gestures during an interview in Denver.
AP Photo/Brennan Linsley, File

Shocked by the story of a family friend, author Jon Krakauer began an exploration of why sexual assault is at once so prevalent and yet so unreported and not prosecuted.

His new book is “Missoula: Rape and the Justice System in a College Town.” In this talk he explains how what happens in Missoula, Montana is a template for our national failure to confront the epidemic of sexual assault.

Bill Radke speaks with Vancouver Sun Columnist Vaughn Palmer about the sexual assault trial of former CBC host, Jian Ghomeshi.

Pattie Bastian, left, and cold case detective Lindsey Wade. Bastian's daughter's rape and murder in 1986 was never solved. Wade believes testing old rape kits could help lead to the killer.
Archive handouts

On August 4, 1986, 13-year-old Jennifer Bastian went for a bike ride through Point Defiance Park in Tacoma.

Several weeks later, her body was found in the park. She had been raped and murdered.

Detectives have DNA evidence from Bastian's killer, but 30 years later they still don't know who he is.

Michael J. Cody
BishopAccountability.org

Bill Radke speaks with Seattle Times reporter Lewis Kamb about his story profiling Rev. Michael Cody, a priest who worked in Western Washington for 21 years and sexually abused children.

Radke also speaks with attorney Michael Pfau about secret files kept by the Catholic Church on abusive priests. 

Oregon lawmakers voted Wednesday to eliminate the statute of limitations for first-degree sex crimes, including rape. Under current law, prosecutors have 12 years after the crime to file charges.

Church abuse victim Mary Dispenza looks on in her studio with her artwork in the background in her Bellevue, Wash., home on Saturday, Dec. 2, 2006.
AP Photo/Kevin P. Casey

Bill Radke talks with Mary Dispenza, director of SNAP (Survivors Network for those Abused by Priests) in Seattle, about her reaction to "Spotlight" winning Best Picture at the Oscars Sunday night. The movie tells the story of how Boston Globe reporters uncovered a massive child abuse cover-up by the Catholic Church.

Abusive Priests On Indian Reservations Leave ‘Profound Wound’

Jan 28, 2016
Attorney Vito De La Cruz in the KUOW studios.
KUOW Photo/Isolde Raftery

Until the 1960s, Catholic boarding schools forcibly took Native American children from their families.

Michael J. Cody
BishopAccountability.org

When the Seattle Archdiocese released names of 77 abusive clergy last week, many Catholics heralded a new era of transparency.

Across the country, tens of thousands of rape kits are sitting in police evidence rooms — waiting to be tested.

Michael J. Cody
BishopAccountability.org

The Archdiocese of Seattle on Friday named 77 Catholic clergy or religious order members accused of sexually abusing minors.

Those on the list served or lived in Western Washington between 1923 and 2008, the archdiocese said in a statement. The list includes names of priests that haven’t been disclosed publicly before.  

Bill Radke talks with Mary Ellen Stone about a forthcoming legislative proposal that would test a large portion of Washington's unprocessed rape kits. Stone is executive director of the King County Sexual Assault Resource Center.

Narrowly beating a statute of limitations deadline to file charges, prosecutors in Pennsylvania announced felony sexual assault charges against comedian Bill Cosby on Wednesday. A former Temple University employee says Cosby drugged and assaulted her in January 2004.

Montgomery County, Pa., prosecutors have charged Cosby with three counts of aggravated indecent assault. The charges against him are second-degree felonies, each carrying a minimum of five and a maximum of 10 years in prison.

In this photo taken Wednesday, Sept. 18, 2013, Sgt. Rick Nelson works on locating information on a hard drive with Det. Caitlin Rebe at the Internet Crimes Against Children unit in Manchester, N.H.
AP Photo/Jim Cole

17,000.

That’s the number of seats in the Key Arena – and the number of people believed to be trading child porn right now in Washington state.

Prosecutors say it’s so tough to keep up with technology – and then build successful cases – that they’re always playing defense.

An Unbelievable Story Of Rape In Lynnwood

Dec 16, 2015
Illustration for the Marshall Project story on Lynnwood rape case.
Wesley Allsbrook

Seven years ago, a Lynnwood teenager was raped at knife point. No one believed her. Here’s an excerpt of the story from the Marshall Project and Pro Pubilica: 

No one came to court with her that day, except her public defender.

She was 18 years old, charged with a gross misdemeanor, punishable by up to a year in jail.

College students can't miss the warnings these days about the risk of campus sexual assault, but increasingly, some students are also taking note of what they perceive as a different danger.

"Once you are accused, you're guilty," says Parker Oaks, one of several Boston University students stopped by NPR between classes. "We're living in a society where you're guilty before innocent now."

Xavier Adsera, another BU student, sounds a similar theme. "We used to not be fair to women on this issue," he says. "Now we're on the other extreme, not being fair to guys."

Pages