BRUNSSUM - THE NETHERLANDS - A Dutch child of the age of 11 has had an abortion as the result of being raped.
When the girl went to the hospital to have the abortion at 16-weeks-pregnant, the hospital contacted Veilig Huis (Safe House), which brought attention to the case to the authorities, writes The Limburger.
A 61-year-old-man, who is believed to be a friend of her father, has been arrested as suspect. In the hair of the girl, traces of a sedative have been found. The girl told the police she couldn't remember what had happened to her. The police is currently investigating if the suspect sedated and raped the 11-year-old-girl more than once.
The suspect, previously convicted for small felonies, is according to his lawyer mentally not ready to give a statement yet, according to his lawyer Alper Çinar. The suspect has stayed silent until now.
The rape happened last year and was kept out of the media for a while by the Dutch police, out of respect for the girl, according to NOS.
PHOTOANDGRIME - When I read this article in the Limburger, another piece was added which I couldn't find online. In the article it mentioned the suspect requested the authorities he wouldn't be kept in prison, until the full conviction has taken place, because the suspect wanted to work on his marriage. Apparently his wife had taken the first steps to divorce him, and in prison, he couldn't change or influence this. The court denied his appeal due to the severity of the rape case.
This specific piece in the whole article made me even more sick. Someone drugged and raped a child who ended up pregnant, and then requests special treatment so save his marriage. How can someone in their right mind think they deserve this? I'd be surprised if any partner would want to stay with their significant other if their SO was arrested for rape, at any rate. There has been no apology or statement yet from the suspect, but the suspect did ask for help when it comes to his personal problems. It's humiliating for the victim the suspect even requested this. Apparently his life is so important he publicly needs to make special demands. If he had a bit of decency, he would have just kept his mouth shut, or instead spoke out about what happened to the victim, and apologised publicly. This has been going on for a year now, and the evidence against the suspect is substantial.
When we prosecute an abuser, I feel we should not only talk about the abuse. How the abuser has been handling the situation, and when and how the crime came to surface, are equally important, for us to learn more about abusers, so we can fight them better in the future. If a horrible crime like the rape of an 11 year old child was hidden for a period of time, we should make it our priority to learn from this. In this situation, a child was drugged and couldn't remember what had happened to her. Drugs isn't the only way to make someone forget about a crime and through it keep them silent about this though. In some situations, violence, threats from the abuser, and blackmail are used to keep a victim silent. When we fight abusers, not only should we punish and address their crimes. We should also talk about the abuser's strategies that have been used to hide their crimes.
The sad thing is that you can prove rape through a DNA rape-kit, but you can't easily prove threats and blackmail for example. These are war-tactics of the mind, and because one voice is not seen as evidence when it's speaking alone, abusers often get away with emotional violence like this. Due to this, emotional violence and the reason for abusers to use it, is barely fought and punished at all. Meaning: we're giving abusers a reason to keep doing it. We as a society, should start to consider this more, and what we as a community and legal system, can do to punish hidden abuse and abuse used to hide abuse. If nobody fights it, it won't stop.
When I read this article, I wanted to write about it. I then thought, why shouldn't I add a news section to my website, in which I discuss news regarding sexual violence? For months I've been thinking about what I can do to help fight it, considering I've experienced it myself. Writing and translating news articles about these topics, and combining those articles with an opinion article, in which I'll question society, and how we treat each other and can work towards a better future, seems like a good way to start. So from now on, there's a news section on this site also.