Last month I wrote about how Roman Polanski wanted his 1977 rape conviction dismissed. I think the consensus was pretty much unanimous that he should feel fortunate to have been allowed to remain free for the past 30 years and go on with his life without much sacrifice on his part at all.
Does your opinion change though if the victim also wants the case dismissed? The victim, Samantha Geimer is apparently pretty ticked at the Los Angeles District Attorney right now. She has twice in the past written letters to prosecutors asking that the original charges be dismissed.
Now, she has once again done so and blames the Los Angeles DA for ruining her life by making public all of the lurid details of the rape in their reply to Polanski's motion to dismiss.
"If Polanski cannot stand before the court to make this request, I, as the victim, can and I, as the victim do. The District Attorney has, yet one more time, given great publicity to the lurid details of those events for all to read again."
"True as they may be, the continued publication of those details causes harm to me, my beloved husband, my three children and my mother," she said. "I have become a victim of the actions of the district attorney."
"My views as a victim, my feelings as a victim, or my desires as a victim were never considered or even inquired into by the district attorney prior to the filing," she said. "It is clear to me that because the district attorney's office has been accused of wrongdoing, it has recited the lurid details of the case to distract attention from the wrongful conduct of the district attorney's office as well as the judge who was then assigned to the case."
I can definitely see how this could affect her life. Here is something that happened to her at a very young age which was probably horribly traumatic and each time the story hits the news or when the documentary about the case was released last year, she has to relive the entire episode again. Not only does she have to relive it, but as she said, her entire family including her children have to live with it and face it and who knows what kind of harm it is doing to them.
I think the views of the victim should be taken into account here, but at the same time I hate the possibility of what kind of precedent this could set. Think about future rape victims who either are convinced or bought off by their attackers and ask that the case be dismissed. Should the court allow each one of those instances to be dismissed as well? Do you think that whatever the victim wants should trump everything else? Should a convicted rapist be set free because the victim is tired of having to deal with this episode that happened so long ago?
What do you think?