Commentary — Teen Savannah Dietrich, who made headlines when she was threatened with jail for naming the teen boys who attacked her on Twitter while the same boys walked free after sexually assaulting her at a party, was told by a prosecutor that her sexual assault was not jail-worthy and she should “get over it” and “see a therapist.”
And this, folks, is the result of the rape culture promoted by politicians like Paul Ryan and Todd Akin with questions over what is “legitimate rape” because, by all accounts, what is known about Dietrich’s assault is most assuredly a crime and one might think warrants a serious charge.
The details of Savannah Dietrich’s assault were not known originally, but the teen girl took a step that is very brave in the wake of the crime perpetrated against her: She allowed her name to be publicized due to the fact her attackers were protected by the law, and she felt that given what they had done to her, the punishment she saw as a slap on the wrist was inappropriate. Records in the case were released last week as Dietrich argued for the prosecutor on the case to be changed as he is an active donor to and alumnus of the Catholic school the boys attended.
Soon Savannah herself was threatened with jail time for naming the boys in public, and, since then, their lawyer has complained that Dietrich ruined her attackers lives by naming them — you know, instead of conceding the boys who attacked her may have ruined their own lives by assaulting a girl at a party and photographing the assault.
According to USAToday, the boys removed or partially removed Dietrich’s top and pants, fondled and digitally penetrated her, taking photographs of the sexual assault and showing them to friends because they believed it would be “funny.” As Dietrich tried to see the boys held accountable for the assault, the paper describes newly released documents as describing the prosecutor’s reaction:
“After Dietrich initially complained about the plea deal the two teens received, Paul Richwalsky, chief prosecutor in the juvenile court division of the county attorney’s office, told her ‘get over it and see a therapist. … The jail was for ‘real’ rapists, murderers and robbers,’ according to an affidavit released Thursday.”
And if the prosecutor whose job it is to make criminals accountable for their actions feels this way about a confessed crime, is it any wonder the boys in the case were not taught any better by the society surrounding them? The paper quotes one of the teens as having said Dietrich, who was incapacitated, was “fine with it,” and adds:
“‘I mean she could have definitely been like, ‘Stop, don’t do this’ and we would have stopped, but she didn’t,’ the boy responded, adding that she was conscious but ‘very drunk’ and had ‘low eyelids.'”
In a court affadavit, Richwalsky said of the case — in which, you may recall, photographic evidence exists — and Dietrich’s efforts:
“Perhaps it is not so much she is trying to intentionally mislead and deceive this court, but rather the delusional assertions made in her affidavit are merely the byproduct of what she would like to believe happened and not what in actuality took place.”
The court will evaluate and potentially accept a plea arrangement for the boys on September 14.