Ghomeshi Trial Begins

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MegB

RevolutionPlease wrote:

Cody87 wrote:

Pondering wrote:

To those of you so eagar to defend the ignorant judge:

I am not defending the ignorant judge. I'm merely correcting the mischaracterization of his statements, and providing full context so the individual reader is free to come to their own conclusions.

 

Come clean fuckwit, you're a sick mother fucker

Hey, ease up on the personal insults.

RevolutionPlease RevolutionPlease's picture

MegB wrote:

RevolutionPlease wrote:

Cody87 wrote:

Pondering wrote:

To those of you so eagar to defend the ignorant judge:

I am not defending the ignorant judge. I'm merely correcting the mischaracterization of his statements, and providing full context so the individual reader is free to come to their own conclusions.

 

Come clean fuckwit, you're a sick mother fucker

Hey, ease up on the personal insults.

You know what, fuck u 2. Sanitizing this assholes comments? Where's his rebuke? This is an emotional topic and if babble doesn't want 2 provide a safe space, fuck u all. This whole thing is a joke, we've failed as a society

Slumberjack

Unionist wrote:

Slumberjack wrote:
If someone is clear about an assault I don't think it's relevant or useful to consider what transpired after.

This is in the context of whacking, i.e.: prior and post history not relevant to a case.  Of course, that's just what I happen to believe, as I make clear in that statement, which admittedly is irrelevant after all because it happens to be the law of the land that defence councel cannot employ that sort of strategy.  Not just my opinion that it be so.

Quote:
Agreed - of course - but the decision wasn't about that. It was about how they concealed, or shifted, or deceived, events that happened during and after. So it was about their overall credibility. You should read the decision. It's infuriating - but it clearly shows how the complainants were betrayed by the police and the Crown. That's my take anyway.

No, it wasn't about that you're right, because the accused's counsel did not try to apply whacking as a defence, so of course it was less than irrelevant, in that it wasn't a factor at all.

I don't know how you are able to conclude that the witnesses were betrayed by crown and police interviewers.

I did read the entire judgement, in sadness.  Then I came here to be sickened.

Slumberjack

I bet you're feeling lucky because Jesus took all of our sins onto himself this very day.

Unionist

Antonia Zerbisias:

[url=http://tvo.org/article/current-affairs/shared-values/blame-the-system-no... the system, not Ghomeshi's defence team[/url]

Quote:

It took unity in the 1980s to change the Criminal Code so that “sexual assault” replaced “rape,” which required that penetration be proven. It took another fight and another 10 years to bring in rape shield laws that, while not perfect, prevent defence attorneys from putting a complainant’s sexual history on trial. 

But the sad truth here is that the Ghomeshi case has perhaps set back sexual assault advocacy by decades and may well result in even fewer women stepping forward than already do.

The good news is that it has blown open the topic for discussion.

Now the burden is on governments at all levels to prove they believe women should get justice, not just legal lip service.

Antonia Zerbisias is a freelance writer and broadcaster. She co-created the viral hashtag #BeenRapedNeverReported.


Cody87

Unionist wrote:

The good news is that it has blown open the topic for discussion.

Did you read the Star article you linked here?

Cody87

Pondering wrote:

The mistake the women made was being insufficiently calculating and guarded.

[118] I accept Ms. Henein’s characterization of this behaviour. S.D. was clearly “playing chicken” with the justice system. She was prepared to tell half the truth for as long as she thought she might get away with it. Clearly, S.D. was following the proceedings more closely than she cared to admit and she knew that she was about to run head first into the whole truth.

[119] S.D offered an excuse for hiding this information. She said that this was her “first kick at the can”, and that she did not know how “to navigate” this sort of proceeding. “Navigating” this sort of proceeding is really quite simple: tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.

According to the judge, the mistake the women made was being too calculated and guarded.

mark_alfred

Interesting article. 

Quote:

Justice William Horkins waded further into the controversies outside the courtroom than strictly necessary for his legal finding.

In particular, the Judge reassures us that he has a “firm understanding” that human behavior can be “variable and unpredictable” and that he must “guard against applying false stereotypes concerning the expected conduct of complainants.” But, he goes on to warn that we must be “vigilant” in “avoiding the equally false assumption that sexual assault complainants are always truthful”.

These are troubling words.

The institutional shadow cast by the false stereotypes about claimants is in no way equivalent in influence to the raw call to believe sexual assault survivors coming from outside the courtroom.

Good observation by the authors. 

mark_alfred

There's been a lot of criticism of the Crown and the police investigators.  I was curious to read or hear something from a prosecutor rather than a defence attorney to see what their perspective was.  I found an article by Sandy Garossino, who is a former Crown prosecutor and prominent media commentator.  She is not critical of the Crown in the Ghomeshi case.

http://www.nationalobserver.com/2016/03/24/opinion/ghomeshi-gong-show

Quote:

This case is an unmitigated disaster for sexual assault survivors, who should be our first priority. It doesn’t help anything to sugar-coat what happened here. By sugar-coat, I mean portray this case as another example of a misogynistic system that victimized women.

The judge didn’t think the complainants were lying because it turned out they'd continued to pursue Jian Ghomeshi romantically, or harboured a sexual attraction to him. He thought they were lying because they deliberately suppressed or concealed important information from the media, authorities, the Crown, and from the court itself, even when giving statements under oath.

On Thursday, in an interview with Chatelaine, L.R. blames police for inadequately interviewing and preparing her. The Toronto Police Service denies her claims. Standard procedure for sexual assault reports, which appears to have been followed based on trial evidence, is that a sexual assault complainant's full interview is recorded and conducted under oath, and she is informed of the procedure.

That seems to be the theme for a lot of apologists for the decision -- that being that the behaviour afterword was not the issue, but rather the inconsistensies in statements given under oath by the complainants.  Fair enough.  Yet, the focus is almost exclusively on events after the alleged assaults. 

There were at least seven women who filed complaints with police after the news story of his dismissal broke out.  That four of those seven (or more) resulted in trials (one yet to happen) is interesting.  What criteria was used to determine if a trial should be pursued from the complaints?  And if Lucy and the other two had recalled and stated clearly in the initial videotaped complaint that they continued to have contact with Ghomeshi (email, written love letter, meeting in the park, or whatever), would charges still have gone forward?

I guess my question is whether the behaviour afterword was considered an issue in deciding which complaints to pursue to trial.  A useless question, I suppose, since we'll never know.  But one I'm curious about nonetheless.  Seems a good idea to focus on society's feelings or biases regarding post-assault contact in cases of sexual assault could be useful. 

mark_alfred

CBC's Fifth Estate is doing a show on it tonight a 9PM.  promo

Unionist

mark_alfred wrote:

There's been a lot of criticism of the Crown and the police investigators.  I was curious to read or hear something from a prosecutor rather than a defence attorney to see what their perspective was.  I found an article by Sandy Garossino, who is a former Crown prosecutor and prominent media commentator.  She is not critical of the Crown in the Ghomeshi case.

Ummm, are we reading the same article??

Sandy Garossino wrote:

But the testimony against him at trial was an unmitigated disaster.

It was so bad that of the very senior BC prosecutors and criminal lawyers I consulted over this trial, all with decades of experience, every single one thought the Crown had an ethical obligation to support an acquittal or flat-out stay the charges. These lawyers, most of them women and all of them feminist, are profoundly troubled by the inadequacy of the Ghomeshi case.

Clearly - very very clearly - the case against Ghomeshi was destroyed by the Crown and the police. They asked for nothing, they checked into nothing, they investigated nothing. Everything they knew about the case - they must have learned by sitting in court and listening to the cross-examination.

The police and the Crown had a duty to the complainants, to other victims, to the public, to ensure that these women were not left on their own to "navigate" the system (one witness put it). They should have explained to them that well-intentioned telling of just part of the story, besides other flaws, could and would lead to their entire testimony being discredited. They should have been far more thorough than Ghomeshi's high-paid help. But they weren't. Because the system doesn't enable it.

 

Pondering

RevolutionPlease wrote:

This is an emotional topic and if babble doesn't want 2 provide a safe space, fuck u all.

I definitely sympathize but presenting babble as a "safe space" is admirable but misguided. babble really shouldn't use the term. Safe spaces on the net are highly guarded and open only to members of the protected group especially for sexual assault victims. In such a space personal attacks on anyone present would be barred no matter who the target as there is an attempt to provide a gentle space with no intimidation whatsoever. Only the mods would be permitted to step in if any inappropriate comments were made. Any escalation of hostility is a safe space 100% is barred.

Pondering

Slumberjack wrote:

I bet you're feeling lucky because Jesus took all of our sins onto himself this very day.

Or maybe the mods here are known to give some leeway on topics that are painful for some people to discuss.

mark_alfred

Re: post #661

I didn't read that article as an attack on the Crown.  That said, I feel the system is fucked.  The author of the article herself also feels this way.  Here's an earlier article by her, entitled, The cowardly Jian and a better way to conduct sexual assault trials.

voice of the damned

Unionist wrote:

mark_alfred wrote:

There's been a lot of criticism of the Crown and the police investigators.  I was curious to read or hear something from a prosecutor rather than a defence attorney to see what their perspective was.  I found an article by Sandy Garossino, who is a former Crown prosecutor and prominent media commentator.  She is not critical of the Crown in the Ghomeshi case.

Ummm, are we reading the same article??

Sandy Garossino wrote:

But the testimony against him at trial was an unmitigated disaster.

It was so bad that of the very senior BC prosecutors and criminal lawyers I consulted over this trial, all with decades of experience, every single one thought the Crown had an ethical obligation to support an acquittal or flat-out stay the charges. These lawyers, most of them women and all of them feminist, are profoundly troubled by the inadequacy of the Ghomeshi case.

Clearly - very very clearly - the case against Ghomeshi was destroyed by the Crown and the police. They asked for nothing, they checked into nothing, they investigated nothing. Everything they knew about the case - they must have learned by sitting in court and listening to the cross-examination.

The police and the Crown had a duty to the complainants, to other victims, to the public, to ensure that these women were not left on their own to "navigate" the system (one witness put it). They should have explained to them that well-intentioned telling of just part of the story, besides other flaws, could and would lead to their entire testimony being discredited. They should have been far more thorough than Ghomeshi's high-paid help. But they weren't. Because the system doesn't enable it.

 

But I'm kinda wondering what the reaction on babble would have been if the cops and the Crown HAD done what you, a few pages back, suggested they should have done, ie. grill the victims as thoroughly as you grill the people you advocate for in the union-management hearings you attend. To wit...

"I grill them worse than any manager can. I challenge anything that sounds half-assed, self-serving, conveniently forgetful, etc. I ask for every document that could possibly bear on the situation. I decide (on a preliminary basis) if they're "guilty" or not. If not, we prepare our defence, look for witnesses, etc. If yes, I counsel them on the possibility of "falling on their sword", taking responsibility, showing remorse, etc. It's their choice."

END QUOTE

If this is how the cops and the prosecutors had treated the complainants, do you think people on babble(or for that matter, the left generally) would be saying "Great! They're helping the complainants navigate the system"?

I'm kinda guessing not. Rather, I think the response would be more along the lines of "These women are being victimized all over again. By the very people who are supposed to be helping them!"

Mr. Magoo

Quote:
They asked for nothing, they checked into nothing, they investigated nothing.

I don't think that was laziness or sloppiness.  The Crown simply doesn't investigate witnesses.  And if they did, it wouldn't it be the exact opposite of #IBelieveSurvivors?

Slumberjack

Unionist wrote:
Clearly - very very clearly - the case against Ghomeshi was destroyed by the Crown and the police. They asked for nothing, they checked into nothing, they investigated nothing.

What was the Crown and the police supposed to do after asking, in the succession of interviews conducted with the complainants, for all relevant facts?  Develop their own suspicions about the accusers and get a search warrant for their email accounts in order to look for things they may have forgotten, or were hiding on purpose perhaps? 

Quote:
Everything they knew about the case - they must have learned by sitting in court and listening to the cross-examination.

Yes this is pretty near to what transpired isn't it?

Quote:
They should have explained to them that well-intentioned telling of just part of the story, besides other flaws, could and would lead to their entire testimony being discredited. They should have been far more thorough than Ghomeshi's high-paid help. But they weren't. Because the system doesn't enable it.

So, people who come forward with allegations of sexual assault are to be believed, except that when they're giving statements always suspect that they are not being completely forthright?  

I think certain misgivings about the feasibility of the case would be understandable in the event that a distrustful, adversarial relationship were to exist between the Crown and their only witnesses, before the defence gets it's turn.

Unionist

voice of the damned wrote:

If this is how the cops and the prosecutors had treated the complainants, do you think people on babble (or for that matter, the left generally) would be saying "Great! They're helping the complainants navigate the system"?

I'm kinda guessing not. Rather, I think the response would be more along the lines of "They're being vicitimzed all over again. By the very people who are supposed to be helping them!"

Are you voicing your own opinion, or that of "people on babble" and "the left generally"?

I'm a person on babble, and part of the left generally, and I clearly stated my view. I won't repeat it - you've quoted me accurately.

If the state is going to bother laying criminal charges, then do what is needed to get a conviction.

If the complainants are sent into court with nothing but their original statements and thrown to the lions (which is precisely what happened here), then there will more acquittals, and fewer complaints (if that's even mathematically possible).

These complainants were re-victimized all right: By being left in the lurch. If there were any real journalists around, they would go and hound the Crown (at least) and ask: "How could you put these women on the witness stand knowing that they had lied, or deliberately left out key elements of the story, and that this would all come out in cross? Or wait a minute... were you actually so lazy and stupid and overworked and indifferent that you didn't even know the truth until Ms. Henein asked her questions!!??"

I'll keep dreaming that we hear those kinds of questions.

Had these flaws in the complainants' statements been brought out in direct examination - or far better yet, in public statements before the trial began - there might well have been a different outcome. There's a huge difference between saying publicly, without being asked: "Yeah, I recalled that wrongly about the colour of his car making me feel comfortable - sorry, here's what really happened" - versus sticking to an invented memory and then being exposed in cross.

 

 

 

Mr. Magoo

Here's an interesting enough guide to direct examination by the Crown.  I'm not saying the the Crown did or didn't do all of this in this particular case, of course.

Sineed

As I mentioned upthread somewhere, victims of rape may behave in a manner that appears to contradict their allegations of sexual assault. Consider the love letters, the consensual sexual encounters with Ghomeshi that took place after alleged assaults, and so forth. This behaviour comes from the imbalance of power between the victims and the accused, and it's accentuated in this case because the accused is (was) powerful and influential.

The defense was able to use the behaviour of the victims against them in order to secure the acquittal. I'm still not a lawyer, but maybe the lawyers here can explain whether the Crown would have been able to make a case by educating the court on the behaviour of rape victims.

Ghomeshi isn't out of the woods yet - there's still the trial in June. Hopefully the Crown went to school on this case and will be more solidly prepared.

It's sickening that there are pictures of women with bruises on their bodies from encounters with this man (the pics seen by CBC execs that lead them to fire him), and yet there remains a "lack of evidence." I just hope that if he gets acquitted on this remaining case in June that he isn't able to  restore his career.

Ward

Mr. Magoo wrote:

Quote:
They asked for nothing, they checked into nothing, they investigated nothing.

I don't think that was laziness or sloppiness.  The Crown simply doesn't investigate witnesses.  And if they did, it wouldn't it be the exact opposite of #IBelieveSurvivors?

I agree. 

Perhaps the temptation of being part of (maybe creating) a celebrity news story was just too tempting. In the end the victory is an amount of human polarized anger and frustration with the final arbiter maintaining authority. 

 

voice of the damned

Unionist wrote:

voice of the damned wrote:

If this is how the cops and the prosecutors had treated the complainants, do you think people on babble (or for that matter, the left generally) would be saying "Great! They're helping the complainants navigate the system"?

I'm kinda guessing not. Rather, I think the response would be more along the lines of "They're being vicitimzed all over again. By the very people who are supposed to be helping them!"

Are you voicing your own opinion, or that of "people on babble" and "the left generally"?

Okay, cards on the table here. I agree that the cops and the Crown should have done what you say you do with the complainants you assist.

And in saying that, I acknowlege that I am giving a big middle-finger to #IBelieveSurvivors(taking my synechdoche from Magoo's crosspost).

And I'll also say that, while exhaustion, lack of resources etc MIGHT be the reason for the cops and the Crown's dereliction of duty, it is also the case that, if they failed to subject the complaiants to the kind of grilling that you advocated, they were basically doing what IBelieveSurvivors(a movement including Tom Mulcair) would want them to do.

TL/DR: Without asking anyone in particular for their opinion, I'm kinda wondering how many people who agree that the cops should have done a better job of grilling the accusers are also among those saying that we should believe survivors. Because you can't really hold both views.

Cody87

Sineed wrote:

As I mentioned upthread somewhere, victims of rape may behave in a manner that appears to contradict their allegations of sexual assault. Consider the love letters, the consensual sexual encounters with Ghomeshi that took place after alleged assaults, and so forth. This behaviour comes from the imbalance of power between the victims and the accused, and it's accentuated in this case because the accused is (was) powerful and influential.

The defense was able to use the victim's dishonesty about this behaviour... against them in order to secure the acquittal. I'm still not a lawyer, but maybe the lawyers here can explain whether the Crown would have been able to make a case by educating the court on the behaviour of rape victims.

The judge claimed to be "have a firm understanding" of the "unpredictable" behaviour of sexual assault victims. Whether he actually does or not is one of the few legitimate debates that could be had about his ruling (I'm certainly not convinced), but regardless, in his conclusions he spoke little about their post-assualt behaviour (about 1 paragraph of 10) compared with roughly 7 paragraphs speaking to the credibility problems due to the complainant's "outright deception." In other words, even if the Crown had needed to educate the courts on the behaviour of sexual assault victims, and had done so, in this case it wouldn't have mattered because the complainants still did not have enough credibility to secure a guilty conviction.

Disclaimer: Complainant is the appropriate legal term, as opposed to victim, given that a guilty verdict was not found. I strive to use neutral language, but I'm not intending to say or even imply that the complainants weren't victims.

Quote:
Ghomeshi isn't out of the woods yet - there's still the trial in June. Hopefully the Crown went to school on this case and will be more solidly prepared.

100% agreed. I'm sure the Crown in that case will use this case to illustrate to the complainant in that case the importance of being forthright. Never lie to a court, even by omission.

Unionist

Sineed wrote:

The defense was able to use the behaviour of the victims against them in order to secure the acquittal.

I'm not sure why you're saying this. Did you read the decision? The defence was able to use the statements of the victims against them, where those statements were false, or shifted, or deliberately incomplete (e.g. a victim admitted her statement was incomplete because she only wanted to recount what was "relevant"), etc. That's why a competent and hard-working and caring Crown might have learned about, anticipated, and avoided some of the worst contradictions.

It wasn't their "behaviour" that did them in. No one told them in clear terms that telling all was the best course of action - or to be clearer, telling all before Ghomeshi's team got you to tell all. They were left on their own to not only relive painful experiences, and give evidence, but to actually in their own minds work out strategy and tactics to get their message across. They were indeed re-victimized, by the police and the Crown.

 

 

Cody87

voice of the damned wrote:
Without asking anyone in particular for their opinion, I'm kinda wondering how many people who agree that the cops should have done a better job of grilling the accusers are also among those saying that we should believe survivors. Because you can't really hold both views.

Not logically, anyway, but this is a very emotional subject for many people.

 

That said, I personally don't like the characterization of the term "grilling" though. It should be enough to impress on the complainant the need to be completely truthful. The police don't need to try to poke holes in the story or disbelieve the complainant, but they should make certain that the complainant absolutely understands that the case will fall apart if they omit anything, and that chances are any omissions will be found.

Considering all three of the complainants did not seem to understand this, it is unlikely this was done by either the police or Crown, and that is a shame.

 

Last point. A previous poster mentioned that there were 3 other complainants who for reasons unknown did not continue on to the trial stage. It is possible that these complainants were more truthful to the police/Crown about futher activity with Ghomeshi, and the police/Crown (erroneously) assumed that this behaviour made their cases too weak to pursue. Some have questioned the judge's knowledge of the possible behaviour of post-sexual assault victims, but in fact it may be that it was the police (or the Crown) who were not knowledgable on the possibly "unpredictable" behaviour of sexual assault victims. If the police vetted the more truthful candidates, it's a tragedy, but it does help to explain what ended up happening in this trial.

Unionist

mark_alfred wrote:

Re: post #661

I didn't read that article as an attack on the Crown.  That said, I feel the system is fucked.  The author of the article herself also feels this way.  Here's an earlier article by her, entitled, The cowardly Jian and a better way to conduct sexual assault trials.

Here's what she said about the Crown - right after the disastrous cross-examinations. She obviously hasn't changed her mind today:

Why the Crown has to answer for the Ghomeshi debacle

Quote:
That the Jian Ghomeshi prosecution is a public debacle is no secret, and Crown Counsel Michael Callaghan has a lot to answer for. [...]

In the Ghomeshi trial, three women complainants were eviscerated by defence counsel Marie Henein through a series of humiliating revelations that should have been uncovered much earlier in proper pre-trial interviews.

Is it possible Callaghan was taken by surprise? Nope, said one of the prosecutors.

"The Crown doesn’t go in blind,” she said, "You’re not going to go into any sex assault trial without knowing everything about your witnesses. You know their evidence is going to be tested.” She considers it standard practice to forcefully caution witnesses to hold nothing back in pre-trial interviews, impressing upon them that if there’s anything potentially damaging, the defence will find it, so "You’d better tell me about it now.”

Yet hold back these complainants did, whether from reluctance or embarrassment. It was the Crown's job in preparation to get that out of them ahead of time, to prevent exactly what happened. [...]

Today Ghomeshi is a reviled figure, and the target of widespread condemnation. If anything, public controversy and hostility places an even greater ethical burden on the Crown to safeguard the integrity and independence of the court. I don’t see how Michael Callaghan can argue that the trial judge should convict, given the flaws in his case.

Couldn't have said it better myself. [emphasis added]

 

 

Mr. Magoo

Quote:
She considers it standard practice to forcefully caution witnesses to hold nothing back in pre-trial interviews, impressing upon them that if there’s anything potentially damaging, the defence will find it, so "You’d better tell me about it now.” Yet hold back these complainants did, whether from reluctance or embarrassment. It was the Crown's job in preparation to get that out of them ahead of time, to prevent exactly what happened.

Yikes.

OK, so... waterboarding if necessary then?  Or what?

It's a bit much to charge any human with the job of forcing another human to say something they don't wish to say.  What tools shall we give them to accomplish this?

voice of the damned

Mr. Magoo wrote:

Quote:
She considers it standard practice to forcefully caution witnesses to hold nothing back in pre-trial interviews, impressing upon them that if there’s anything potentially damaging, the defence will find it, so "You’d better tell me about it now.” Yet hold back these complainants did, whether from reluctance or embarrassment. It was the Crown's job in preparation to get that out of them ahead of time, to prevent exactly what happened.

Yikes.

OK, so... waterboarding if necessary then?  Or what?

It's a bit much to charge any human with the job of forcing another human to say something they don't wish to say.  What tools shall we give them to accomplish this?

Well, I guess just the option of not taking the case forward. Like...

A: Okay, if we're gonna have any credibiltiy in court, I need to know why you did X Y and Z on a certain date, when you previously claimed that you didn't do X Y and Z.

B: Oh, gee, I dunno. I can't even remember doing X Y and Z.

A: Well, then there's no point in continuing with this prosecution, 'cuz I guarantee the defense will rip us to shreds.

mark_alfred

A woman describes her experience of reporting a sexual assault to police.

https://www.facebook.com/theglobeandmail/videos/10153998154373904/

Mr. Magoo

Quote:
Well, I guess just the option of not taking the case forward. Like... A: Okay, if we're gonna have any credibiltiy in court, I need to know why you did X Y and Z on a certain date, when you previously claimed that you didn't do X Y and Z.

OK, except that in this case the Crown had no knowledge of (just as a concrete example) the handwritten letter until it was produced in Court.  What's more, I can't think of any reason the Crown could have had to assume that there was such a letter and to try to compel DeCouterre to admit to it. 

I'll admit that I find it hard to comprehend how anyone could write a long letter like that, by hand, and then completely forget about it.  The exact words in it, sure.  But the letter itself?  Or perhaps moreso just the feelings and emotions that prompted it?  Ya, that confuses me (and no, "people can be complex" or "PTSD" don't really clarify it.)  But if we assume that DeCouterre genuinely has/had no memory of writing the letter and no memory of the feelings described in that letter then I think we really have to hold the Crown blameless in not having sussed that out.  Because now we'd have to start talking about hypnosis, or regression therapy or whatever.  How do you get someone to disclose something they don't remember?  And on what grounds would you proceed to do that?

Unionist

Mr. Magoo wrote:

It's a bit much to charge any human with the job of forcing another human to say something they don't wish to say.  What tools shall we give them to accomplish this?

You seem to have missed the fact that Marie Henein - not their friend, not using torture - got these witnesses to say everything. And the Crown - their friend - didn't. You know why? Because the Crown never asked. Never prepped them. Never told them, "tell me the whole truth before you get in there".

And what's this "something they don't wish to say"?? If they didn't "wish to say" it, why did they say it in open court, in response to Henein? Because they did wish to say the truth. They were simply left in the lurch, to sink or swim.

Have you not seen enough legal experts saying this yet? Is it actually not bleeding obvious?

 

mark_alfred

From Lucy's Coming Forward Facebook page, I found the following:  consent in terms of tea.

Mr. Magoo

Quote:
You seem to have missed the fact that Marie Henein - not their friend, not using torture - got these witnesses to say everything.

Not by befriending them, or earning their trust, or by asking the right questions.

She simply produced concrete evidence that was undeniable.

If I were to claim -- which I might -- that I've never, ever, in my whole life been to the CN Tower, and someone produces photos of me eating in the revolving restaurant, and doing the Edge Walk, it's not like they've somehow convinced me to own up.  They've shown me proof that I can no longer plausibly deny.  Of course my story HAS to change.

Quote:
And what's this "something they don't wish to say"?? If they didn't "wish to say" it, why did they say it in open court, in response to Henein?

Because Henein was holding concrete evidence.

Unionist

Mr. Magoo wrote:

Quote:
And what's this "something they don't wish to say"?? If they didn't "wish to say" it, why did they say it in open court, in response to Henein?

Because Henein was holding concrete evidence.

Correct. Evidence. Which the useless police and Crown never had. Never looked for. Never asked for. Like, "may I please see all your emails?" And other instruments of torture like that. Never gave a shit. Took their statements, and left it at that.

I do believe you're making my point.

 

Slumberjack

Unionist wrote:
You seem to have missed the fact that Marie Henein - not their friend, not using torture - got these witnesses to say everything. And the Crown - their friend - didn't. You know why? Because the Crown never asked. Never prepped them. Never told them, "tell me the whole truth before you get in there".

Are there recordings or transcripts that we may refer to of the direct examinations that show the Crown to have been incompetent and derelict as described?  Otherwise, how do you know what preambles, discussions, instructions and cautions were entered into by the Crown in it's interactions with the complainants.

brookmere

Unionist wrote:
Never asked for. Like, "may I please see all your emails?"

You think the police/crown should have gone on a fishing expedition all the way through their private lives? Isn't that exactly the sort of thing those who support sexual assault victims oppose? Isn't that exactly the sort of thing which will discourage victims from coming forward?

As others have already said, you can't have it both ways. You either respect the victims or you don't, and respecting them means you have to trust them to disclose pertinent information.

 

 

Pondering

Mr. Magoo wrote:

Quote:

I'll admit that I find it hard to comprehend how anyone could write a long letter like that, by hand, and then completely forget about it.  The exact words in it, sure.  But the letter itself?  Or perhaps moreso just the feelings and emotions that prompted it?

Not if it is something you do habitually, write letters in general or write love letters. I've never done that so it might stick in my mind but not necessarily especially if there was no response to it.

She may also have remembered writing a letter but not the order of events, that she wrote it after that incident, because at the time she didn't think of it as an assault.

Unionist

brookmere wrote:

Unionist wrote:
Never asked for. Like, "may I please see all your emails?"

You think the police/crown should have gone on a fishing expedition all the way through their private lives?

No kidding. That's what the defence did. Why would the Crown not ask for all the available information so as to be able to prepare their case, anticipate problems? 

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Isn't that exactly the sort of thing those who support sexual assault victims oppose? Isn't that exactly the sort of thing which will discourage victims from coming forward?

No. What will discourage them from coming forward is what happened to these three women. The victimizer had all their private information, and their "defenders" didn't. What is so unclear about that?

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As others have already said, you can't have it both ways. You either respect the victims or you don't, and respecting them means you have to trust them to disclose pertinent information.

So it's the victims' fault for not coming forward - without being asked - and volunteering "pertinent" information? We "trusted" them to disclose, and they didn't?

Didn't you get that DeCoutere left out information that she considered "not relevant", and got destroyed over that? Don't you think the Crown and the police have a better notion than a victim as to what is "pertinent" in getting a conviction?

I'm having trouble believing we're having this conversation.

Slumberjack

Unionist wrote:
Evidence. Which the useless police and Crown never had. Never looked for. Never asked for. Like, "may I please see all your emails?" Never gave a shit. Took their statements, and left it at that.

That would have constituted a most unusual request, to delve that deeply into the life of a potential victim, which could easily be categorized as being part of the requirements of a culture where victims are put on trial, not believed, their personal lives intruded upon, etc.  It is they who become the subject of inquiry, not the accused.

Mr. Magoo

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Correct. Evidence. Which the useless police and Crown never had. Never looked for. Never asked for.

I don't think it was the Crown's job to "look" for it.  Such intrusive investigation of a witness would open up a whole great big can of wriggly worms.

And I don't doubt that they asked for it.  But if someone sticks to their story of "no, there's nothing" then I remain unsure of exactly what the Crown is supposed to do.

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Not if it is something you do habitually, write letters in general or write love letters.

Are there really people who write so many letters, or love letters, that they cannot remember having sent one to someone that they now despise?

I want to be very clear here:  I don't expect anyone to "level up" to the point of perfection, nor do I believe that if you write a love letter to someone who assaulted you then you cannot claim to have been assaulted. 

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I've never done that so it might stick in my mind but not necessarily especially if there was no response to it.

I'm not sure what you mean by what I bolded above.  How can you be sure of this in a way that the three witnesses could not?  I'm not disbelieving you.  But testimony taken at face value, the three witnesses also believed that they'd had no further romantic or intimate contact with Ghomeshi until material evidence proved otherwise.

 

Unionist

Slumberjack wrote:

Are there recordings or transcripts that we may refer to of the direct examinations that show the Crown to have been incompetent and derelict as described?  Otherwise, how do you know what preambles, discussions, instructions and cautions were entered into by the Crown in it's interactions with the complainants.

The Crown allowed them to get on the witness stand and change their story, make stuff up, get mixed up... only to be exposed in cross-examination. I don't believe the Crown conspired to shaft them. So my conclusion is stupidity, asinine and unforgiveable irresponsibility.

I linked to [url=http://www.nationalobserver.com/2016/02/11/opinion/why-crown-has-answer-... above. Please read it and get back to me. 

ETA: I've already suggested how to get the answers. Some journalist must ask the Crown:

"How could you put these women on the witness stand knowing that they had lied, or deliberately left out key elements of the story, and that this would all come out in cross? Or wait a minute... were you actually so lazy and stupid and overworked and indifferent that you didn't even know the truth until Ms. Henein asked her questions!!??"

Still waiting for that

Mr. Magoo

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I don't believe the Crown conspired to shaft them. So my conclusion is stupidity, asinine and unforgiveable irresponsibility.

Would you consider adding to that "things the Crown is not mandated, nor even permitted, to do"?

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How could you put these women on the witness stand knowing that they had lied

Do you believe the Crown knew?

 

pookie

Unionist wrote:

If the state is going to bother laying criminal charges, then do what is needed to get a conviction.

 

No.  That is not the role of the Crown.  

And we are damn lucky it isn't.

 

 

pookie

Unionist wrote:

Mr. Magoo wrote:

It's a bit much to charge any human with the job of forcing another human to say something they don't wish to say.  What tools shall we give them to accomplish this?

You seem to have missed the fact that Marie Henein - not their friend, not using torture - got these witnesses to say everything. And the Crown - their friend - didn't. You know why? Because the Crown never asked. Never prepped them. Never told them, "tell me the whole truth before you get in there".

And what's this "something they don't wish to say"?? If they didn't "wish to say" it, why did they say it in open court, in response to Henein? Because they did wish to say the truth. They were simply left in the lurch, to sink or swim.

Have you not seen enough legal experts saying this yet? Is it actually not bleeding obvious?

 

With respect, Unionist, this could only be argued by someone who was not following the trial itself, but, perhaps, relying on brief accounts of it in the media.

Henien would ask a question.  The complainant would give an answer.  She would ask again. And again.  Slightly reworded.  More ominous. Same answer.

Then she would produce documentary evidence that clearly was obtained from Ghomeshi.  That in some way contradicted what had just been said.

Sometimes the individual complainant would immediately recall the document.

Sometimes she wouldn't.

Sometimes she would demur.

Sometimes she would deny.

And sometimes she would admit it.

It is nothing like what you are describing.

pookie

Unionist wrote:

brookmere wrote:

Unionist wrote:
Never asked for. Like, "may I please see all your emails?"

You think the police/crown should have gone on a fishing expedition all the way through their private lives?

No kidding. That's what the defence did. Why would the Crown not ask for all the available information so as to be able to prepare their case, anticipate problems? 

 

You realize, of course, that every iota of evidence the Crown uncovered would then be turned over to the accused.

Pondering

Mr. Magoo wrote:

Are there really people who write so many letters, or love letters, that they cannot remember having sent one to someone that they now despise?

I want to be very clear here:  I don't expect anyone to "level up" to the point of perfection, nor do I believe that if you write a love letter to someone who assaulted you then you cannot claim to have been assaulted. 

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I've never done that so it might stick in my mind but not necessarily especially if there was no response to it.

I'm not sure what you mean by what I bolded above.  How can you be sure of this in a way that the three witnesses could not?  I'm not disbelieving you.  But testimony taken at face value, the three witnesses also believed that they'd had no further romantic or intimate contact with Ghomeshi until material evidence proved otherwise.

To my knowledge I've never given anyone a love letter. Had I done so once I think I would have remembered it because it would be atypical behavior for me but maybe not.

I don't know what their characters are like or how they experienced what they experienced. I do know that there were terrible years in my life that I wiped from my memory to the point where years later I could no longer re-construct the order in which things happened to me. I know that I bumped into a man that had drugged and raped me on the street a few years later and I said hello back and grinned like an idiot when he spoke to me. I know when my sister's rapist, a friend, knocked on the door of my apartment, we didn't open it but the whole time he was there we hid in the livingroom all three of us grinning and laughing shocked that he thought he might be welcome.

So no, I don't have any problem at all accepting how the women behaved nor what they did and didn't remember about the order of events or that they had contact with him after the events in question. He didn't rape any of them and none needed medical treatment. They acknowledged that at the time they minimized what had happened. They were not traumatized. They went on with their lives. Given that he blew Lucy off I'm not surprised that she dismissed it all from her mind. I'm also not surprised that when Ghomeshi's story hit the news that she recalled what he had done to her without recalling all the surrounding details.

Unionist

pookie wrote:

You realize, of course, that every iota of evidence the Crown uncovered would then be turned over to the accused.

Absolutely - of course. And why shouldn't it? The accused is defending against serious charges, and the court is hoping to get some actual facts and evidence on whose basis to make a finding and a decision.

Under the circumstances as they played out, it would appear the accused had all the information, and the Crown had none. I'm trying hard to imagine a worse scenario for the victims. I'm not a lawyer - so help me understand how this was good.

Unionist

pookie wrote:

With respect, Unionist, this could only be argued by someone who was not following the trial itself, but, perhaps, relying on brief accounts of it in the media.

Actually, pookie, I base my argument on the judge's written decision. I didn't follow the trial (is there a transcript??) nor the media accounts. Did the judge misconstrue the evidence? Do you have sources of information about what went on that I'm missing?

Misfit Misfit's picture

women have to be 100% perfect and not be traumatized by being assaulted in order to be taken seriously by the judicial system. Before, women's prior sexual history was used as a weapon against women in the courts in order to protect the perpetrators, now the courts go after their conduct after the assaults in order to discredit their allegations. I don't see how there has been any progress in the way the courts treat women who have been assaulted. Women are damned if they have been traumatized and have naturally sketchy momories of all the details in the case. And if they are in any vulnerable position where they have to maintain contact with the perpetrator despite the violence, this is used as evidence against them as well, even though the social dynamics of their power imbalance in the relationship clearly dictates why they need to maintain that contact. You cannot convince me that stereotypes were removed from this decision

pookie

Unionist wrote:

pookie wrote:

You realize, of course, that every iota of evidence the Crown uncovered would then be turned over to the accused.

Absolutely - of course. And why shouldn't it? The accused is defending against serious charges, and the court is hoping to get some actual facts and evidence on whose basis to make a finding and a decision.

Under the circumstances as they played out, it would appear the accused had all the information, and the Crown had none. I'm trying hard to imagine a worse scenario for the victims. I'm not a lawyer - so help me understand how this was good.

The Crown's obligation covers all information that might be relevant to an issue  It has very little discretion to hold stuff back.  So if it gathers the information in the way that you are suggesting, it will be forced to reveal an enormous amount of personal information about the complainants to the accused.  Not at all of it will be admissible, but because much of it is arguably relevant it gives the accused an entryway into the complainants' lives.  

I can't think of anything less likely to encourage reporting.

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