Three years ago, mutual friends introduced south east London resident Liam Allan to a woman at a party. The two struck up a relationship. Though he knew she had never had a sexual relationship before, he said he worked hard to make her feel comfortable.
“I didn’t want her to regret it because nobody ever wants anyone to regret their first time,” he told The Telegraph. Still, Allan says he could not handle the woman’s “issues,” and ended the relationship after he began attending a class at Greenwich University. A few weeks later, he was arrested for allegedly raping the young woman multiple times.
There was no movement in the case for a year. When Allan sought information from Detective Constable Mark Azariah about the case, he was told the detective had recommended no charges be filed, since the case was weak. But just two hours later, Allan was told he was being charged with allegedly raping and sexually assaulting the woman a total of 12 times.
No Exculpatory Evidence For You?
For two years, Allan was under suspicion for raping the woman. He had been released on bail after being arrested, and faced up to 10 years in jail and a life on the sex offender’s registry if found guilty.
Since the accusation was made, Allan and his attorneys had tried to get the Croydon Crown Court to turn over more than 40,000 text messages—yes, you read that correctly—from his accuser. His attorneys said they were denied this evidence because the messages weren’t relevant.
But just one day before the trial was set to start, Jerry Hayes took over as new prosecutor and saw the messages. The charges were dismissed and Hayes apologized to Allan.
“There was a terrible failure in disclosure which was inexcusable,” he said. “There could have been a serious miscarriage of justice, which could have led to a very significant period of imprisonment and life on the sex offenders register. It appears the officer in the case has not reviewed the disk, which is quite appalling.”
Looks Like Using the Legal System for Personal Revenge
The woman who accused Allan said he had raped her multiple times over a 14-month period, and that she did not enjoy sex with him. (Side note: if simply “not enjoying” sex can be a claim for rape or sexual assault, we’re all in big trouble.) But the text messages show her directly contradicting these claims. In one message, she wrote “It wasn’t against my will or anything.” She also continually asked him for more sexual encounters and discussed rape fantasies.
Allan believed she made the accusation out of revenge for him refusing to see her anymore.
We don’t know her name, because it’s still being protected. She should be charged with falsely reporting a crime, because she crippled this man’s life for two years with no regard for her actions. So far, I see no reports that such a charge is coming for her, but the court is going to look into Azariah, the cop who withheld the text messages. Allan’s attorneys say he is “considering legal action against the Met Police and CPS.”
This happened in the UK, but it is no different than what’s happening on college campuses in America. The way sexual harassment and assault are being discussed these days, I have no doubt the “guilty until proven innocent” standard will be applied to our court systems en masse.
Similar Things Are Already Happening On U.S. Campuses
What happened to Allan has already been happening on college campuses across America. The most famous example occurred at Amherst College. A male student received oral sex from his girlfriend’s roommate, who turned around two years later and accused him of sexual assault. After he was expelled with little chance to defend himself and the deck stacked against him, his attorney discovered text messages from the accuser the night of alleged incident.
The messages made clear the accuser knew she had done something wrong that night and her roommate would be mad about it, and said she was not “an innocent bystander.” She also claimed she had called another friend over because she felt “very alone and confused.” In reality, she had invited another man over whom she had been texting flirtatiously with earlier in the evening. He told the accused student’s attorneys that the accuser showed no signs of distress.
When the accused student showed the text messages in an attempt to exonerate himself, the school refused to reopen the case and let him return to school, saying they followed their process properly and the texts didn’t really exonerate him.
This sort of reclassifying of clear messages has plagued other students as well. The Columbia University student accused by “Mattress Girl” revealed Facebook messages that showed his accuser to continue to pursue him and flirt with him even after she alleged he had punched and choked her. She was allowed to claim her messages did not reflect her real feelings and she was merely trying to start a dialogue with him.
This tactic was used against a Vassar student as well. After losing his virginity to a woman, she messaged him several times apologizing for taking advantage of him that night. She then accused him of sexual assault and claimed the messages “did not correctly reflect her feelings” because she was in a state of “shock and disbelief.” Vassar bought this explanation and expelled the accused student.
What’s Making This the New Norm
With “victim-centered” or “trauma-informed” training for college investigators and now campus police, incidents like this will be more common. This type of training insists investigators believe accusers and that any shifty behavior or lies they tell are the result of trauma. In other words, no matter what they do, they’re telling the truth.
The University of Texas adopted a blueprint that told campus law enforcement to anticipate what the defense would say and actively work to make sure accused students can’t defend themselves. For example, they’re told to “avoid repeating a detailed account of prior interview statements and instead only record in detail the new information.” This is to make sure no inconsistencies in the accuser’s story come to light, so the defense can’t use them to prove innocence.
Make no mistake: what happened to Liam Allan is already spreading in America, and we need to make sure we don’t continue to railroad the accused for the sake of political correctness.
I’m using Liam Allen’s name in the hopes that search engines will lead with articles like mine, which make it clear he was the victim and should not be sneered at as an “accused rapist.”