A jury acquitted actor Michael Le Vell of several counts of rape and sexual assault against a child:
Le Vell, 48, who plays the car mechanic Kevin Webster in the ITV soap, said the teenager was a fantasist whose allegations were seeking to ruin him. He was cleared of all the charges against him.
Moments before the verdicts were announced a group of his relatives clasped hands in the public gallery. The actor merely nodded as the first “not guilty” was delivered.
The article states that the girl accused Le Vell of raping her when she was six. She testified that Le Vell raped her as she held a teddy bear. She also stated that he pressed another teddy bear to her mouth and told, “It’s OK, just keep calm, stay asleep … I’m going to get rid of the evil.”
Le Vell’s attorney pointed out several inconsistencies in the girl’s story, including the girl previously stating that the assault happened when she was ten and that Le Vell raped her as many as ten times. Alisdair Williamson went on to state:
There’s an agonising lack of detail from this witness. She can’t give you details because it did not happen, and that’s why her story varies according to who she’s talking to.
Had she really been raped as a young child it would have been extremely painful. There wasn’t even a muffled scream. She just didn’t make a sound. Is that real?
The second portion of his argument lacks substance. He assumes that if the girl were in pain she would scream out. That is not necessarily the case. It is possible that any pain the girl experienced would not have been enough to make her cry out.
The first part of Williamson’s argument, however, makes sense. Lack of detail and a changing story could suggest the person is lying. One would assume that if the girl could recall the assault, she should also recall something about what happened leading to or following the assault.
The allegations emerged in September 2011 after she and her mother attended a motivational talk by a woman who herself claimed to have been raped as a child.
Mr Le Vell was arrested on suspicion of three rapes, but the case was dropped due to lack of evidence two months later.
The girl later contacted police with fresh allegations and following a review of the evidence in the case, Mr Le Vell was rearrested and charged in February this year.
The jury also heard evidence suggesting that no assault happened:
But the court heard that medical experts who had examined the girl had found no clear physical evidence that she had ever been sexually abused.
When she was examined two years after the last alleged attack, tests indicated that she had not had full sex, the jury was told.
That evidence, combined with the girl’s changing story, likely prompted the jury to acquit Le Vell. That is the fair result. If the state cannot prove its case beyond a reasonable doubt, the jury must acquit.
Yet some people cannot stand the verdict. Feminists on Twitter erupted over it, creating the “ibelieveher” hashtag. It appears that the feminists using the hashtag believe the verdict was unjust because it did not result in a conviction.
This is yet another example of feminists doing it wrong. Justice is not a conviction in every case. Justice is the jury or the judge weighing the evidence presented by both sides and deciding which evidence they find credible beyond a reasonable doubt.
Is it possible that Le Vell raped the girl for several years? Yes. Based on the evidence presented at trial, is it likely? No. The physical evidence alone is enough to raise doubts about her claims.
Instead of standing behind someone in phony solidarity, feminists ought to question why the case reached trial with such weak evidence. The only evidence that supports the girl’s claims are her own statements, and those statements changed over time. It was unwise for prosecutors to take the case to trial with a witness with such weak credibility.
Feminists can support the girl if they want, yet in doing so they send the message that people, or rather men, accused of sex crimes do not deserve due process. They should not be judged by a jury of their peers based solely on the evidence. They should not be found guilty only if the evidence proves their guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.
Instead, as the feminists imply, the only choice the jury should have in rape cases is conviction.
Those feminists can believe the girl all they want, yet they should also ask themselves why they believe her. Is it because they find her story credible, or is it because Le Vell is a man and any man accused of rape must have done it?