The Washington Post just published another investigative report on the University of Virginia gang rape allegations—and whatever credibility Sabrina Rubin Erdely andRolling Stone had left is totally obliterated.
WaPost spoke with the three friends who rescued Jackie after her alleged gang rape on September 28, 2012. The details they provided depart significantly from Jackie’s narrative as reported by Erdely. The friends told WaPost that Jackie did not appear battered or bloodied and gave a description of the attack significantly different than what was later published in Rolling Stone. They also clarified that it was Jackie who didn’t want to go to the police, not them:
The scene with her friends was pivotal in the article, as it alleged that the friends were callously apathetic about a beaten, bloodied, injured classmate reporting a brutal gang rape at the Phi Kappa Psi fraternity. The account alleged that the students worried about the effect it might have on their social status, how it might reflect on Jackie during the rest of her collegiate career, and how they suggested not reporting it. It set up the article’s theme: That U-Va. has a culture that is indifferent to rape.
“It didn’t happen that way at all,” Andy said.
Instead, the friends remember being shocked. Though they did not notice any blood or visible injuries, they said they immediately urged Jackie to speak to police and insisted that they find her help. Instead, they said, Jackie declined and asked to be taken back to her dorm room. They went with her — two of them said they spent the night — seeking to comfort Jackie in what appeared to be a moment of extreme turmoil.
Erdely portrayed Jackie’s friends as popularity-obsessed sociopaths who deterred her from reporting the assault. They say that’s not true; it was Jackie who didn’t want to report it.
That may seem damning, but it’s just the beginning. According to the friends, Jackiedid name her attacker, but no one by that name attended UVA. Pictures of the attacker—the man Jackie claimed was a UVA junior who had asked her out on a date—that she provided to the friends were actually pictures of a former high school classmate who never attended UVA and “hasn’t been to Charlottesville in at least six years.” His name is not the one Jackie gave her friends. These details were all verified by WaPost.
Here’s the timeline, according to the friends:
The three friends said that Jackie soon began talking about a handsome junior from chemistry class who had a crush on her and had been asking her out on dates.
Intrigued, Jackie’s friends got his phone number from her and began exchanging text messages with the mysterious upperclassman. He then raved to them about “this super smart hot,” freshman who shared his love of the band Coheed and Cambria, according to the texts, which were provided to The Post. …
Jackie told her three friends that she accepted the upperclassman’s invitation for a dinner date on Friday Sept. 28, 2012.
Curious about Jackie’s date, the friends said that they failed to locate the student on a U-Va. database and social media. Andy, Cindy and Randall all said they never met the student in person. Before Jackie’s date, the friends said that they became suspicious that perhaps they hadn’t really been in contact with the chemistry student at all.
U-Va. officials told The Post that no student by the name Jackie provided to her friends as her date and attacker in 2012 had ever enrolled at the university. Randall provided The Post with pictures that Jackie’s purported date had sent of himself by text message in 2012.
Will “rape” become as meaningless as “racist” has become by gratuitous use of the term by women like this and Dunham who cry “rape” when it appears that no rape took place? Inventing “rape” stories for notoriety and for attention getting makes a mockery of the thousands of women who are raped every year, and is denigrating of innocent men unjustly. Even “No means no” becomes a sick parody when the decision of “no” comes days, years, and even decades after the sexual incident.