A Heinous Sexual Assault Goes Unreported in a West Virginia School
Of all the crimes that can be committed, there is perhaps non more heinous than a sexual assault. Despite this fact, there remain a number of people in West Virginia and throughout the country that do not take cases of sexual assault seriously. In the view of Heavens Law, this is simply unacceptable. Those who perpetrate sexual assaults must be made to feel the full weight of justice, and those who willfully allow sexual assaults to happen under their watch must be brought to justice as well.
More About the Case in West Virginia
According to the West Virginia Gazette, the sexual assault occurred at Capital High School in Kanawha County. On the morning of January 16th, a 15-year-old female student was attacked and raped by a 17-year-old student who had been allegedly involved in a previous sexual assault at the school the year before. The 15-year-old student who was attacked reported her situation to a school counselor, and the counselor, in turn, reported the incident to the school’s principal.
Here’s where things get even worse. Instead of acting promptly to alert the authorities to the incident, the school’s principal, Clinton Giles, did nothing. Instead, he determined that contacting the authorities could wait until the following morning when he and other school officials would have the chance to review security footage of the school.
When security footage revealed that the two students had been involved in a struggle before the rape occurred, Giles finally decided to contact the authorities. Supremely dissatisfied with Giles’ lack of promptness in reporting the incident, authorities brought charges against him. In the authorities’ view, by taking so long to report the incident, Giles severely jeopardized the case, as a thorough forensic exam would not be able to be conducted so long after the incident.
How Can Something Like This Happen?
As we mentioned, there are many people who do not take sexual assault incidents seriously. In defending himself, Giles claimed that he had 48 hours to report the sexual assault to authorities, according to the West Virginia Gazette’s report. But, does that make any sense at all? Had the incident in question involved a weapon or drugs in the school, do you think that Giles would have waited 48 hours to alert the authorities about that incident? Waiting that long simply wouldn’t make any sense, so why would Giles think he could wait with respect to a sexual assault?
We don’t share this to alarm you, but to call to attention the alarming lack of care that some individuals can take with respect to sexual assaults. It’s important that victims of these heinous crimes have their rights protected, and we’re glad to learn that Giles is being taken to task for his negligence. We’re also glad to hear that the 17-year-old perpetrator of the crime is being taken to task as well. It’s our sincere hope that the justice system will levy the punishment on these two individuals that they deserve.
Of course, the justice system alone cannot repair the damage that’s been done to the 15-year-old victim or any other victim of a sexual assault. It’s important for these individuals to know that they have recourse through the civil courts as well. Pursuing a case through this avenue isn’t about vengeance; it’s about holding awful criminals accountable and acquiring the compensation necessary for dealing with the aftermath of a sexual assault. If you yourself are a victim, or if you know someone who is, and you believe that you have a case against either perpetrator or someone who allowed the assault to happen, then get in touch with Heavens Law today. We will fight tooth and nail for your rights.