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#399353 - 06/04/12 11:58 AM Sandusky Trial: Victims can't use Aliases
phoenix321 Offline


Registered: 09/26/11
Posts: 912
Loc: USA, FL
Judge ruled the law states they must use their real names in court and not aliases. Just broke on the news. I don't like it but understand it.


Edited by phoenix321 (06/04/12 11:59 AM)
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A guy opens the front door and sees a snail on his doorstep. He picks up the snail and throws it across the street in a neighbor's yard. A year later, the guy opens the front door and the same snail is on his doorstep. The snail says, "What the f*ck was that about?"

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#399354 - 06/04/12 12:02 PM Re: Sandusky Trial: Victims can't use Aliases [Re: phoenix321]
KMCINVA Offline
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MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/31/11
Posts: 1565
Hopefully there is support in place for all the victims--it will be hard on them. As many of us know, there are hurtful people out there who do not want to accept the reality of CSA and the effects it has on a child throughout their life. I do hope they close off the room when the victims are testifying from the media and cameras. With all they have suffered, they deserve some dignity to be extended their way--


Edited by KMCINVA (06/04/12 01:14 PM)

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#399364 - 06/04/12 01:12 PM Re: Sandusky Trial: Victims can't use Aliases [Re: phoenix321]
GoodHope Offline
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Registered: 07/05/11
Posts: 413
I came here to post this same article. Heartsick and furious!
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#399371 - 06/04/12 03:47 PM Re: Sandusky Trial: Victims can't use Aliases [Re: phoenix321]
GoodHope Offline
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#399374 - 06/04/12 03:56 PM * [Re: phoenix321]
Smalltown80sBoy Offline
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Registered: 03/25/12
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Edited by Smalltown80sBoy (04/28/13 04:41 PM)

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#399386 - 06/04/12 06:09 PM Re: Sandusky Trial: Victims can't use Aliases [Re: phoenix321]
LN3(SS) Offline
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Registered: 06/20/08
Posts: 486
Loc: MD
I'm glad the judge ruled this way.

NO case should be considered "unique." The Constitution should apply equally to ALL criminal cases. The Constitution gives an accused the unfettered right to confront the witnesses against him.

Military survivors are forced to use their real names on the few rare cases that make it to court martial. Adult survivors are forced to use their real names as well. CSA survivors should be no different.

I am all for perpetrators being held accountable through the judicial process. However, perpetrators have the right of due process which includes the right to confront the true person that is accusing them, not some pseudonym.

Brian
_________________________
"When we go into battle, I will be the first to set foot on the field, and I will be the last to step off, and I will leave no one behind. Dead, or alive, we will all come home together." LTG Hal Moore, Jr., USA (Ret.)

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#399389 - 06/04/12 07:07 PM Re: Sandusky Trial: Victims can't use Aliases [Re: phoenix321]
GoodHope Offline
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Registered: 07/05/11
Posts: 413
It's hard enough to come forward. Why make it more difficult. In theory, I get your point Brian but not in practice. Particularly formaples abused by other males, protection of identity is probably paramount to getting victims to come forward. Now what I really hope is that no one backs out and that the country responds with outrage for the pedophile and pride and compassion for the victims (no longer). And I think the judge is a dumb ass.


Edited by GoodHope (06/04/12 07:08 PM)
Edit Reason: Typos from this dern phone!
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#399390 - 06/04/12 07:11 PM Re: Sandusky Trial: Victims can't use Aliases [Re: phoenix321]
JustScott Offline
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Registered: 01/27/08
Posts: 2572
My problem is, some of these people are still minors. I believe the minors should DEFINITELY be protected.

The one fellow who was still in high school as all this was breaking was literally harassed and bullied into leaving school because the school and administrators didn't bother to do enough to stop it.

I understand the judicial process and due process, but for those who are still minors, they should be protected. Who knows what child molesting bastards are watching just to get off on those who are still minors.

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#399393 - 06/04/12 07:59 PM Re: Sandusky Trial: Victims can't use Aliases [Re: phoenix321]
LN3(SS) Offline
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Registered: 06/20/08
Posts: 486
Loc: MD
If minors are able to be exempted from the Confrontation Clause of the Constitution, then what about all the other victims of crime? No exceptions should be created for one class of survivor that is not equally applicable to all survivors.

As soon as we begin differentiating theory from practice, we get into trouble. We then become able to justify departures from normal by saying "Oh well, it doesn't REALLY work." The rule of law has to apply equally to all.

No matter what Sandusky is accused of, he still has rights. He is presumed innocent until found guilty by a jury of his peers. He has the right to confront his accusers, no matter what their age.

I also hope none of the accusers backs out. They deserve to have their truth heard. I can't help but think how powerful an experience like that could be to someone in their healing. Being able to reclaim the power that was taken must be an incredibly moving thing.

Brian
_________________________
"When we go into battle, I will be the first to set foot on the field, and I will be the last to step off, and I will leave no one behind. Dead, or alive, we will all come home together." LTG Hal Moore, Jr., USA (Ret.)

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#399413 - 06/04/12 10:34 PM Re: Sandusky Trial: Victims can't use Aliases [Re: phoenix321]
ShortedDiode Offline


Registered: 11/26/11
Posts: 92
Loc: Hamilton, ON Canada
I'm sure the victims feel conflicted about testifying under their real names. On one hand it throws everything out in the open and leaves them fully exposed if they do and as KMCINVA mentioned, there are people out there that don't believe in the reality of CSA. The concerns about the difficulty in coming forward are completely valid too. I know, I never came forward when the police asked other victims to come forward after one of my perps was caught because I was afraid to. At the same time there's no shame in the victims standing up and saying this who I am, this is what happened, and I survived it.

Unfortunately, there is another problem that's unique to the Penn State victims though: There are probably a lot of people out there who blame them for Paterno being fired. Like it or not, that's an ugly piece of fallout that wasn't their fault and was totally out of their hands but made a lot of people very angry that's going to follow the victims around for a very long time, probably for the rest of their lives. I'm sure there's some risk to them there.

I hope the victims are receiving all the support they need because with the trial and possibly appeals afterward, it's going to be an ugly rough time before it's over with and they can begin working on recovery in earnest.
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#399436 - 06/05/12 06:11 AM Re: Sandusky Trial: Victims can't use Aliases [Re: phoenix321]
phoenix321 Offline


Registered: 09/26/11
Posts: 912
Loc: USA, FL
Pennsylvania doesn't have such a law to allow aliases. Judge could do nothing. If an adult, nope, there shouldn't be such a thing as aliases. Courts must be open to the inspection of the public including witness. Or, there can be secret trials and secret witnesses and gov't can do anything. That's court. News organizations shouldn't report names of any victims of rape. But, that's voluntary.
_________________________
Phoenix

A guy opens the front door and sees a snail on his doorstep. He picks up the snail and throws it across the street in a neighbor's yard. A year later, the guy opens the front door and the same snail is on his doorstep. The snail says, "What the f*ck was that about?"

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#399444 - 06/05/12 08:16 AM Re: Sandusky Trial: Victims can't use Aliases [Re: phoenix321]
JustScott Offline
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Registered: 01/27/08
Posts: 2572
How often are minors identities protected in cases but still fulfill the letter of the law to allow accused to face accusers?

All the bloody time.

I understand the pseudonym thing, but I think in the case of those who are still minors they should use the same techniques and such that have been used in MANY of courtrooms and cases around the country. ESPECIALLY in this case where we know one boy was already bullied out of school because as was pointed out, people want to make them the target of hate over the whole Paterno issue.

So we already have 5 witnesses who are feeling the pressure. I hope they can stay the course, cuz if this guy gets off, he'll just go on to find more victims.

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#399469 - 06/05/12 11:38 AM Re: Sandusky Trial: Victims can't use Aliases [Re: phoenix321]
unhappycamper Offline


Registered: 10/21/11
Posts: 592
Loc: VA
Any court can act to protect the identity of any witness, if disclosure of his or her name could threaten the witness's safety. It has nothing to do with the right of confrontation--the witness still appears and speaks in court, in the defendant's presence.

Some courts have incorporated special means (stuffed toys, friendly canines) to reassure very young children in CSA and divorce trials. Older witnesses are on their own.

That's why I can't understand this remark by Wes Oliver, a Widener Law School professor, regarding the Sandusky trial: "One of the real questions, it seems to me, that the prosecution has to face is whether they put McQueary on" the stand, Oliver said. "If the jury is left with the impression that the independent witness is making up stuff, then why would people who stand to benefit from this not make stuff up?"

Who "stands to benefit from this"? The accusers? What do they get--a trophy? The only one who is certain to benefit is Amendola--regardless of the outcome.

John

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#399470 - 06/05/12 11:39 AM Re: Sandusky Trial: Victims can't use Aliases [Re: phoenix321]
unhappycamper Offline


Registered: 10/21/11
Posts: 592
Loc: VA
Whoops, forgot the link to the AP story quoted above:

http://www.wtop.com/351/2888928/Accusers-credibility-possible-Sandusky-strategy

John

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#399506 - 06/05/12 04:37 PM Re: Sandusky Trial: Victims can't use Aliases [Re: phoenix321]
Chase Eric Offline
Moderator
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 10/25/10
Posts: 1287
The law is certainly blind to the fact that minors should be afforded special consideration. True - consideration should be given to protect the rights of the accused. And true - most of those testifying are probably no longer minors. But children - and victims who were children at the time of their victimization - need the fundamental protection of dignity that assured anonymity gives them. That was precisely whet the crime took from them, and while it is not the courts job to give it back, the judicial system should certainly understand the negative impact that identity disclosure has on requisite candor.
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#399588 - 06/06/12 01:31 PM * [Re: LN3(SS)]
Smalltown80sBoy Offline
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Registered: 03/25/12
Posts: 2217
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Edited by Smalltown80sBoy (04/28/13 04:41 PM)

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#399655 - 06/07/12 09:32 AM Re: Sandusky Trial: Victims can't use Aliases [Re: phoenix321]
Chris Anderson Offline
Executive Director
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 04/21/12
Posts: 226
Loc: New York
For those who are interested, I had an op-ed pubished about this decision in the Centre Daily TImes today.

http://www.centredaily.com/2012/06/07/3220748/support-accusers-in-their-search.html

With regards to adult defendants, this decision is somewhat standard legal procedure as I understand it. However I feel that because there have been few cases like this before, with the type of coverage and scrutiny this case is likely to get, I would have preferred that judge Cleland be more mindful of that. To his credit, in his decision he did indicate that he was keenly aware of the issues at stake for the accusers, but he felt that he had no legal grounds for granting this request.

In the long run, there is a chance that had he allowed the adult accusers to testify under pseudonyms an appeals court could have found procedural error and refused to uphold any convictions, which would send the case back to trial and very likely force the accusers to testify a second time under their real names.

Chris

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#399657 - 06/07/12 09:38 AM Re: Sandusky Trial: Victims can't use Aliases [Re: phoenix321]
Chris Anderson Offline
Executive Director
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 04/21/12
Posts: 226
Loc: New York
It should also be noted that none of the accusers has pulled out at this point because of this ruling.

Their courage and bravery should be an inspiration for all of us. I would encourage those of us who are filled with frustration to take a lead from these men and do all we can to support them.

Chris

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#399659 - 06/07/12 09:58 AM Re: Sandusky Trial: Victims can't use Aliases [Re: phoenix321]
unhappycamper Offline


Registered: 10/21/11
Posts: 592
Loc: VA
Does Pennsylvania have any laws regarding tampering with witnesses? The US Code makes it a crime with prison terms up to 30 years to threaten or intimidate a witness or victim in a federal case with the intent to influence his/her testimony or willingness to appear. 18 USC 1512. In a criminal case, the tamperer can get a sentence as long as the defendant could get in the original prosecution.

Also, isn't "Victim 4" the one who's still a minor? Is there any special consideration under PA law for protecting the identity of a minor who is a complaining witness in a sexual assault case?

Just askin'.

John

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#399665 - 06/07/12 11:14 AM Re: Sandusky Trial: Victims can't use Aliases [Re: phoenix321]
LN3(SS) Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 06/20/08
Posts: 486
Loc: MD
I am personally against protecting the identity of the witnesses except in a case where there is an imminent danger to the life of the witness. CSA survivors, even those that are still minors, deserve no special consideration in this area.

The public has an interest in having an open courtroom. The defendant has an interest in requiring that people who wish to charge him with a crime are required to do so openly.

I am strongly against creating a special exception for CSA survivors that would not apply equally to all survivors. Sexual assault is a crime no matter what the age. If adult survivors are not allowed to use a pseudonym or have their identity otherwise obscured, then child survivors should not enjoy that protection.

I happen to agree with this quote from Chris:
Originally Posted By: Chris Anderson"
Our justice system must require accusers to face these dangers in order to protect the rights of the accused and ensure a fair trial.
If we want to charge our perpetrators, great. But we must also be willing to stand the light of public scrutiny no matter what our age.

Equal Justice Under Law.

Brian
_________________________
"When we go into battle, I will be the first to set foot on the field, and I will be the last to step off, and I will leave no one behind. Dead, or alive, we will all come home together." LTG Hal Moore, Jr., USA (Ret.)

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#399704 - 06/07/12 09:59 PM * [Re: LN3(SS)]
Smalltown80sBoy Offline
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Registered: 03/25/12
Posts: 2217
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Edited by Smalltown80sBoy (04/28/13 04:42 PM)

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#400227 - 06/12/12 11:54 AM Re: Sandusky Trial: Victims can't use Aliases [Re: phoenix321]
jacobtk Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 04/08/03
Posts: 527
Keep in mind that this is just for trial and it is the typical fare. Courts must keep track of the names of all the parties involved in a trial, which means making everyone's name part of the court record. Children usually have their names stricken from public record (many courts use their initials), but their names are still in the official legal documents. This is basic procedure.

When it comes to the names being reported, that it is a different matter. The court can restrict the media from publishing some information, but free speech trumps most of that. In other words, the media can publish the names whoever they want unless there is a court order preventing that. But so far no media outlet I know of published anyone's name, which is the usual courtesy.
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#400233 - 06/12/12 01:39 PM Re: Sandusky Trial: Victims can't use Aliases [Re: Chris Anderson]
LandOfShadow Offline
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Registered: 12/11/07
Posts: 684
Loc: Minneapolis, Minnesota USA
It's more productive to oppose victim blaming and attacks than testify anonymously. Their identities leak out, the one boy already had to leave high school, it's not possible to hide and not helpful in lots of ways. Come forward, be believed, get help.

Originally Posted By: Chris Anderson
... do all we can to support them.


What do you suggest? How can we do that?

I see no organization showing leadership in making that happen.
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#400302 - 06/13/12 01:14 AM Re: Sandusky Trial: Victims can't use Aliases [Re: LandOfShadow]
pufferfish Offline
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Registered: 02/26/08
Posts: 6818
Loc: USA
Our society falls into place to support certain causes. For instance, protection of animals. Cruelty to animals. (I'M NOT CRITICISING THIS, I'm just using it as an example}. Actually the animal protection people were the first ones to come out against child abuse. So where are the folks who could lend support to the kid who has been very heroic?

Puffer




Edited by pufferfish (06/13/12 01:15 AM)

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#400359 - 06/13/12 05:55 PM Re: Sandusky Trial: Victims can't use Aliases [Re: LandOfShadow]
Chris Anderson Offline
Executive Director
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 04/21/12
Posts: 226
Loc: New York
Originally Posted By: LandOfShadow
It's more productive to oppose victim blaming and attacks than testify anonymously. Their identities leak out, the one boy already had to leave high school, it's not possible to hide and not helpful in lots of ways. Come forward, be believed, get help.

Originally Posted By: Chris Anderson
... do all we can to support them.


What do you suggest? How can we do that?

I see no organization showing leadership in making that happen.



Voices4Victims is a great group formed by a PSU student that is getting letters directly into the hands of the survivors who are testifying and those who are not, but who have retained counsel.

You can also show your support by putting the message out there in any way you want that these guys, and every survivors who has testified in court before or will do so in the future, is doing a great thing under extraordinary pressure and deserves our support.

I've also posted some suggestions in the new sticky I wrote today with suggestions for those who are feeling triggered by the trial coverage.

Lastly, if anyone knows any wealthy philanthropists who want to cover the cost of attending a WoR, I'm always happy to make that phone call wink




Edited by Chris Anderson (06/13/12 06:15 PM)

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