Morgan Triplett, a 20-year-old UC Santa Barbara (UCSB) student, has been charged with filing a false rape report. According to a report from the Santa Barbara Independent, Triplett solicited a man to beat her up in exchange for sex.
She was sentenced last Thursday to 60 days in the Santa Barbara County Jail, three years probation, and as part of a no-contest plea, 200 hours of community service, 60 hours of mental health treatment, and a $710 fine.
Authorities believe that Morgan Triplett traveled to UC Santa Cruz (UCSC) in February for a LGBT conference. While there, authorities said Triplett put together a bizarre scenario to save her relationship.
Triplett dialed 911 on February 17 claiming she was the victim of a rape while searching for banana slugs on the UCSC campus. She provided a detailed description of her attacker, pushing detectives to detain several people for questioning and place Santa Cruz on alert. The story immediately started breaking down, however, when Triplett refused to submit her clothing as evidence.
She would also not allow DNA samples to be taken for testing.
Police launched an 11-day investigation, at the end of which they determined Triplett had met a man on Craigslist, who agreed to brutalize her provided she pay him afterward with sexual intercourse. Triplett finally broke down and admitted rape had never happened.
Santa Cruz County assistant district attorney Johanna Schonfield said the male subject would not face charges as there was no evidence he knew Triplett would submit the false rape report. Since the assault was consensual, he could not be charged with battery, Schonfield added.
Surprisingly, this is not the first time that Morgan Triplett has filed a rape report. In March 2012, she called the Santa Barbara’s Sheriff’s Office to report an attempted rape. In that incident, Triplett said, she was taking out her trash just outside her home.
That’s when Triplett claimed that a man assailed her from behind, pushing a knife to her neck, and attempting to remove her pants. Her complaint to police said that a skateboarder had scared off the assailant. Schofield said that no suspects were ever caught, adding that it wasn’t clear if the report was accurate. In both cases, Triplett said her attacker smelled like cigarette smoke.
Morgan Triplett is reportedly in counseling and is near graduation from UCSB with a bachelor’s degree in sociology.
While false rape reports are certainly rare, they can still be an issue for law enforcement. Earlier this month, 32-year-old Leanne Black was sentenced to two years in prison for falsely claiming she was raped.
And in June, we brought you the story of Brian Banks, who spent more than five years in jail based on false rape allegations leveled at him from accuser Wanetta Gibson.
Do you think Morgan Triplett got off easy with 60 days in jail for her false rape report?
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