Fact Check: Did Hillary Clinton Laugh At A Rape Victim?

One of the most contentious things heard by a Trump supporter is that Hillary Clinton laughed at a 12-year-old rape victim. It is a statement designed to turn Hillary Clinton supporters, most of whom are women, away. It is a claim that they keep repeating.

It also isn’t true. The Washington Post fact checker, Glen Kessler, reports that Hillary Clinton did not laugh at a rape victim. A listen to the actual tapes that Hillary Clinton is heard on, also confirms this.

The alleged victim, Kathy Shelton, also says that “Hillary Clinton took me through hell.” But, as the Washington Post notes, Kathy Shelton did not even know until 2007 that Hillary Clinton was the public defender in the 1975 case.


A tape of an interview with Hillary Clinton about a 1975 rape case, where she was appointed as a public defender of the accused, has been released to the public. Trump supporters have said that in the tape, Hillary Clinton laughs at a 12-year-old rape victim, and laughs about getting her client off.

This is not true. Hillary Clinton does laugh on the tape. She laughs at a system that would get a rapist off, she laughs at the fact that her own client failed a polygraph asserting his innocence, suggesting, even she thought her own client was guilty.

But, she pled out the case for him because of lack of evidence. The Washington Post also says that the victim in question had some alleged psychiatric issues, according to an affidavit filed by Hillary Clinton, and was referred to as “mentally unstable” by Hillary Clinton.


This issue has been brought up since last week’s second presidential debate, where Donald Trump brought alleged sexual assault victims to a press conference before the event. It wasn’t a typical press conference, because reporters were not allowed to ask questions.

One of the attendees was the 1975 victim. She says that Hillary Clinton laughed at her. There is no evidence of that. The Inquisitr also reported that Kathy Shelton was paid $2,500 for that appearance. Kathy Shelton denies that she was paid by the Trump campaign for that appearance.

As the Inquisitr reported in a separate report, Kathy was paid by a Trump supporter who runs a company known as WeSearchr.

That Hillary Clinton laughed at the victim is an easy claim to debunk, and can be debunked in six minutes by just listening to the tape. The Washington Post goes into the case in great detail to thoroughly fact check these claims. The Washington Post also has the court docket information and case evidence on Scribd.

The Washington Post says that Kathy Shelton has a GoFundMe page to raise money for herself in light of all of the persecution she has undergone at Hillary Clinton’s hands. On the page she says the following.

“Hillary Clinton then began to attack my character, forcing me to undergo multiple polygraphs where I was asked explicit sexual questions I didn’t even understand. Next I was sent for a psychiatric examination. It felt like I was the one on trial.”

The Washington Post has checked and accumulated all of the court documents on Scribd. They have found that there is no evidence that Kathy Shelton underwent a psychiatric evaluation, a “central part of her story.”

When the case actually occurred, Kathy Shelton was 12 years old. The public defendant was 27-year-old Hillary Rodham. She ran a legal aid clinic at the University of Arkansas and was appointed to defend a 41-year-old man accused of raping Kathy Shelton.

Hillary Rodham was hand-picked by the judge. Hillary Clinton was upset with the assignment, reports Arkansas Online. The prosecutor in the case, Mahlon Gibson, told Arkansas Online the following.

“She didn’t do it as a favor to anybody. She was forced into it. This guy was charged with rape. He started screaming for a female attorney, and there weren’t many in Fayetteville at that time, particularly ones that practiced criminal law. She was upset. She said: ‘I don’t want to represent him. I can’t represent him, and I want you to get me off this case.'”

It was one night when the accused, Tom Taylor, 41, went for a drive with his cousin, and a 15-year-old boy, who, at the time, was “infatuated” with Kathy Shelton, reports Washington Post. They drank some whisky mixed with Coca-Cola. Then they drove down to a ravine where the two men left, leaving the teenagers together.

The teens had sex, according to the 15-year-old boy’s statements to police. Afterward, Tom returned, and “apparently attacked Shelton.” The 15-year-old told police she screamed and he witnessed Taylor “hitching up his pants.”

When Hillary Rodham was put on the case, a July 28, 1975, affidavit shows that she did request an order for a psychiatric evaluation, stating she thought the girl was “emotionally unstable” and had a tendency to seek older men out and also “engaged in fantasizing.”


The order for a psychiatric evaluation was denied. In 2007, a reporter showed Hillary’s affidavit to Kathy Shelton. The Washington Post says that Kathy responded with he following.

“I never said anybody attacked my body before, never in my life. I have to understand that she was representing Taylor. I’m sure Hillary was just doing her job.”

But, Kathy’s story has changed considerably since the Hillary Clinton tape was revealed in 2014 by a reporter from Arkansas, Roy Reed. The article for which Roy Reed conducted the interview has never been published.

Arkansas Online has spoken with the reporter on the tapes. He has denied that Hillary Clinton laughed at a rape victim as well.

“As far as her laughing, God knows she was not laughing over the notion that this rapist was going to go free.”

Kathy Shelton has also accused Hillary Clinton of putting her through multiple lie detector tests on her GoFundMe page. She did undergo them, and according to The Daily Beast, she failed a polygraph saying that “she didn’t understand one of the specific sex-related questions.”

There is no evidence on record showing that Hillary Clinton requested those polygraphs.

The Washington Post also says that since their fact checking article went live, Kathy Shelton’s GoFundMe page was “substantially revised.”

“After this column appeared, Shelton’s GoFundMe site was substantially revised, with all references to an alleged psychiatric exam and the polygraph test removed.”

Hillary Rodham did not laugh at the victim in this case. But the alleged victim keeps tweeting that she did.

The alleged victim has only had a Twitter account since October, 2016. In six days, she has garnered 21,000 Twitter followers.

Her first tweet was October 8, 2016. The second presidential debate was October 9.


Her pinned tweet suggests Hillary Clinton laughed at her and ruined her life. The laughter claim is not true, and Kathy Shelton did not know who the public defender was until 2007.

Hillary Clinton did however laugh at her own client, and his ability to pass a polygraph, an indication that she believed the victim. This shows at 1:57 of the interview.

“He was one of these…rootless folks who…wasn’t going to make a living on the land and he was kind of around…ended up in Springdale. Of course he claimed that he didn’t. All this stuff. He took a lie detector test! I had him take a polygraph, which he passed, which forever destroyed my faith in polygraphs [laughter].”

She also says that the prosecutors had evidence, and talks about the accused’s underwear, which was bloody. She says that was the sad part for the victim. She also says that underwear had a piece cut out of it, which she believes was cut out by the crime lab. At 3:04 in the video she says the following.

“The piece that they’d cut out. It was really odd. I mean, I plea bargained it down because it turned out they didn’t have any evidence.”

Then, Hillary Clinton says she had the underwear investigated further, taking it to someone in Brooklyn that had won a Nobel Prize “for his work on theRH factor” and was a “premiere investigator” dealing with blood evidence.

Hillary Clinton says the forensic expert could not get enough evidence from the underpants to prove anything. She told the prosecutor, “This guy’s ready to come from New York to prevent this miscarriage of justice.”

Hillary Clinton then discusses the plea bargain. She went to present the plea, for charges of first degree rape, and was told that the charges were already being dropped to “I can’t remember, something like five years, something.”

Then she says, they were going to talk to the accused to see if the lack of evidence was factually supported by the accused’s account of the story, and asked her to leave the room. She says, she told the judge, “Judge, I can’t leave the room I’m his lawyer!”

The judge said he didn’t want to talk about it in front of her. The plea bargain was the result, the accused spent approximately two months in county jail, according to Hillary Clinton and the tapes.

The title of this video is very misleading, as it claims that Hillary Clinton “brags” and laughed at the rape victim. She did not. She laughed a little about the outrageousness of the lack of evidence, that a hole had been cut from the underwear of the accused and it was still admitted.

She chuckled about being asked to leave the room in front of a judge, “But that was Mahlon,” she says, referring to the prosecutor. She never once laughed at the victim, in fact, the victim did not even come up in the tapes that are being used to say she laughed at the victim.

She was strictly talking about the accused, her client. The thing that she laughed the most about was that her client failed a polygraph that suggested he was innocent. This evidence led to her claim of saying that she didn’t trust polygraphs anymore.

[Featured Image by Seth Wenig/AP Images]