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Thursday, July 30, 2015

CIVILIAN COURT-MARTIAL DEFENSE LAWYERS: Rolling Stone Editor Reportedly Stepping Down - More Fallout from the Rush to Believe Anyone Who Claims Rape

Military Criminal Defense Lawyer (Former JAG Attorney) News:

According to several news articles, an editor at Rolling Stone is stepping down after 19 years in the wake of the discredited story Rolling Stone ran about an alleged rape on the University of Virginia campus.  That story can be found here:

In an earlier blog post, I addressed the controversy about this Rolling Stone article, "A Rape on Campus," and how it is indicative of the prevailing mindset among politicians, advocacy groups, and other public figures, leaders, and news outlets that a rape allegation must be true, shouldn't be questioned or investigated, and guilt should be presumed.  

Not only is this fallacy poisoning public discourse about the topic, it is leading to much more dangerous aftereffects than just a false news report.  The military justice system is being changed, and the rights of a military accused are being eviscerated, because of this ill-informed and misguided belief that a complainant in a rape or sexual assault case must automatically be believed and to investigate or question or defend against such a claim is somehow outrageous.  Here is that blog post:

In addition to Rolling Stone's editor stepping down, former UVA fraternity brothers who were impacted by the false story have filed a lawsuit against Rolling Stone:

I have no doubt that this false narrative and push to believe anyone who claims rape or sexual assault has resulted in innocent people, particularly young men, being convicted, jailed, and facing the lifelong consequences of a rape conviction.  This includes innocent young men serving in the military.  When will the tide be stemmed and when will reason and the Constitutional principles at the heart of our criminal justice system once more matter?  

For more information about the military justice system, particularly cases alleging rape and/or sexual assault in violation of UCMJ Article 120, type “rape” or “sexual assault” into the search bar above the blog posts.  Also, see:

We offer free consultations for a case you may be involved in.  Just call us.

Thank you.    

By: Attorney Richard V. Stevens
Civilian criminal defense lawyer and military defense lawyer
Military Defense Law Offices of Richard V. Stevens, P.C.

Blog postscript: Attorney Frank J. Spinner and I (attorney Richard V. Stevens) are former active duty military lawyers (JAG). Our perspectives and advice, therefore, are based upon our experience as military defense lawyers and as civilian criminal defense lawyers practicing exclusively in the area of military law and military justice. This blog addresses issues in military law, military justice, military discipline, military defense, court-martial practice, the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ) and other military and/or legal topics. Nothing posted in this blog should be substituted for legal advice in any particular case. If you seek legal advice for a particular case, please contact The Law Offices of Richard V. Stevens and The Law Office of Frank J. Spinner for a free consultation. These military defense law offices are located in Northern Florida (Pensacola, Ft Walton, Destin, Eglin AFB, Hurlburt Field, Duke Field, Panama City, Tyndall AFB areas) and Colorado Springs, Colorado (FT Carson, Peterson AFB, Air Force Academy, Schriever AFB, Cheyenne Mountain Air Force Station, Buckley AFB areas), but our military defense law practices are worldwide – we travel to wherever our clients are stationed or serving and need us.

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