Colleges across America, sacrificing basic civil rights to the altar of political correctness, are losing their collective minds on the issue of campus sexual assault. California’s latest lunacy – requiring ‘affirmative consent’ – even has some liberal leaning outlets openly questioning its wisdom. But nothing hammers home the point quite like a real-life example – and we have our latest in the case of Treon Harris, quarterback for the University of Florida, who, earlier this month, was accused of sexual assault.
The incident allegedly took place in the wee hours of a Sunday morning, October 5th, while the parties involved were celebrating the team’s Saturday evening victory. The alleged victim, a freshman, reported the incident roughly 24 hours later, around 1 am on Monday morning.
Fair enough — except that within a day, on October 6th, Harris was immediately suspended from the team and suspended indefinitely, even though an investigation of this nature can easily take weeks to complete.
In other words, Harris was punished without the completion of any investigation and, it seems, without any evidence (since Harris was not arrested, it stands to reason no evidence existed apart from the word of the accuser).
What should be the domain of the police and criminal justice system to sort out, is nowadays instead usurped by ill advised and untrained campus executives who prefer to use the opportunity to boast and brag of their politically-correct credentials (remind you of anyone? the D.A. in the Duke-lacrosse case?), and think little of the possibility that Harris may be innocent. In noting Harris’s suspension, U.F. President Bernie Machen ridiculously stated: “We have no tolerance for sexual assault on our campus.”
That’s nice… but Mr. Machen neglects to mention U.F. also apparently has no tolerance for due process, nor interest in treating Harris as innocent until he is proven otherwise. It’s almost as if the stories of Brian Banks, the Duke lacrosse players, or the many others falsely accused of rape, were wiped from our collective memories.
Rumors immediately began to leak out that the victim was not telling the whole story. Those who dared posit questions, such as radio host Daniel Gillman, were shamed and forced to retract/apologize. Even Senator Marco Rubio, who’d posted an ill-timed tweet warmly congratulating Treon on his football win prior to the allegations, deleted his tweet.
My gut was telling me there was more to this story (why would the accuser wait a full 24 hours before reporting the sexual assault, if it really was a sexual assault?, for instance. Victims either grapple with speaking up for long periods of time or do so immediately.). Regardless, gut-aside, the fact remained that a young black man was being treated as a criminal, and nationally smeared as one, without the benefit of an investigation, hearing, evidence, or trial.
Then, on October 9th, Harris’s attorney released the following bombshells:
First, we want to dispel the idea that the alleged victim and our client didn’t know each other. Our client and the alleged victim knew each other to the extent that they had each other’s cell phone numbers and had previously spent time together of their own accord for the purpose of socializing together.
We want to dispel the idea and rumors floating around that our client forced his way into the alleged victim’s apartment. Those rumors are patently false. Mr. Harris has never been inside the young lady’s room. We understand that all of the evidence was gathered from our client’s room, which is where the interaction between the two parties took place.
We know that an individual has given testimony to law enforcement that he had sexual relations with the alleged victim less than an hour before the alleged sexual conduct with our client took place. In fact, testimony indicates that the young lady in question was the sexual aggressor in that interaction.
Our investigation has produced no evidence whatsoever that the young lady in question was impaired.
We have provided law enforcement with multiple witnesses that will indicate what the interaction was between the alleged victim and our client before they returned to our client’s room: they were smiling and they were holding hands. They returned to the Springs Residential Complex in a car driven by another female student who was a friend of the alleged victim.
We have provided multiple text messages to the authorities investigating this incident. These texts were exchanged among the alleged victim, Mr. Harris, and the other gentleman mentioned above.
When these text messages are released, they will show that the young woman making these allegations initiated the conduct with Mr. Harris while he was still in the locker room in Knoxville. Shortly after the team plane landed, texting continued between Mr. Harris and the alleged victim.
We believe the evidence will show the alleged victim was in fact in the sexual aggressor with not one, but two young men early last Sunday morning.
So much for the accusation. Still, Harris remained suspended and remained branded a likely rapist. Not only was he still banished from the team, but he was forbidden from even stepping foot on campus.
This evening, I decided to check on the status of the investigation and Googled Treon’s name. Almost no new articles surfaced, indicating there was no update or new material on the issue. I looked through some more hits, though, and finally came across an October 13th Fox Sports article noting Treon Harris was now reinstated to the team. “Odd,” I mused. “Why would that be?” Surprise, surprise! It is because on Friday afternoon, October 10th, the victim withdrew her complaint. Yes, withdrew her complaint. Either she suddenly and inexplicably decided that she does not want her rapist investigated and is, additionally, allowing a rapist to roam free and possibly harm another woman … or she was lying/exaggerating all along.
I’ll leave it up to you to decide which is more probable.
Notice the Fox Sports article neglected to mention this, as does most of the media. They simply report that Treon is back on the team with no explanation as to how that came about (a girl who may have lied; a university who rushed to punish an innocent man).
As a woman, I can think of few experiences as awful as a sexual assault. One comes close, though: being publicly branded a rapist by a society that has willingly chucked innocent-until-proven guilty into the wastebin.
Get ready, though, America. It’s only going to get worse from here on out. Due process is, according to our ruling class of liberals, an inconvenient relic to be tossed aside in the pursuit of rape-culture’s perverse sense of ‘justice.’
UPDATE: Ezra Klein, head of VOX.com, seems to have no problem with the system breaking a few eggs to make an omelette. A guy like Treon having his life ruined? A small price to pay for advancement. The liberal Klein apparently is not a fan of Blackstone’s formulation, previously part of the liberal Bible but now deemed inconvenient.
Many are shocked. I am not.