Reading #9 This magazine: Because everything is political
Story of Terese
Celebrated 22 birthday & is woken up by her sister. She had not money, no bank card &
had been robbed & sexually abused
The police report begins as “She and her sister were victims of rape lastnight” it ENDED
with “ This file will be finalized as unfounded.”
** sexual assult did not occur or was not attempted.
16% of sexual offences were classified “unfounded” in 2002 & remained steady since
Susan Havart( counselor @ sexual assault support centre of Ottawa) believes that the
police put cases in the unfounded category because they don’t want to do anything about
them, or cant .
How does an investigation establish that a sexual assult did not occur?? Often by
scrutinizing who a woman is, and overlooking how investigations are supposed to be
44% of cases that police are told about and “founded” are cleared though laying a charge.
For those that proceed to court, fewer than half end in getting a conviction.
Terese says she remembers going outside the pub for a cigarette with the men. She put
her drink down & then does not remember where she was. She heard him says “youre a
good kisser” Her knees being held apart. And darkness.
Detective Theresa Kelm leans forward to Terese and says “sometimes we do things and
then realize... oops, that was a mistake..” is that what happened here?”
*** as if she doesn’t believe Terese
She writes in her report “ Terese didn’t display any obvious signs of emotion.”
In another interview 2 weeks later, Detective Kelm says... “ Since you don’t remember
having said no to them (the men), you don’t even remember you had sex was what you
told me last time... I don’t have anything to indicate there was a sexual assault, and this
file is going to be closed.” Without pausing she adds...” Its funny how you’re not
Teresa feels that he life has been destroyed. She cant eekp up with her work and almost
finds herself homeless. “the police could have said We’re sorry, we believe you, but our
hands are tied and we cant do anything” she said. But they didn’t do that. They made it as
bad as they could.
Its been 5 years since Terese was assaulted, she is fighting back and has returned to work
and is connected with sup