Rape is unquestionably a horrific act that leaves victims scarred for life, and sexual predators need to be punished for their crimes.
However, attorney Brad Koffel says that he’s seeing more cases where teenagers engaging in sexual activities leads to criminal charges against the boy in what he considers “regret sex”.
“She certainly has every right to say no at any point in time: before the sexual activity and during the sexual activity. But not the next day and not the next week. And those are the cases we’re talking about,” he said.
It’s a difficult line to straddle. Before any protections were put in place for victims, it was far too easy for someone to dismiss their claims. Now with Rape Shield law preventing an investigation into the accuser’s statements, Koffel believes that the balance has shifted too far in the opposite direction.
“There needs to be more vetting because the pendulum has gone so far in the opposite direction to the point where we really don’t have a presumption of innocence in these cases. The young man does not go to court feeling the presumption of innocence,” he said.