When is Alcohol a Factor in Sexual Assault?
The Missoula Police Department are investigating a sexual assault on campus. A 19-year old woman has apparently reported a rape, and an 18-year old, known to the woman, is being questioned.
The article is brief, I’m sure because so little is known. That’s not to denigrate the Missoulian, and I’m glad for their reporting, however brief.
What struck me was was last sentence:
Welsh wouldn’t identify whose dorm room it was and said he didn’t know if alcohol played a role in the assault.
I don’t know – it seemed out of place Did public information office offer the statement? Was he asked?
No does mean no.
So was that statement in the context of ‘maybe the guy was drunk, which is why it happened’ as if it were some degree of a mitigating factor? An excuse for why this happened?
Or was it more in the sense of ‘the female might of been drinking,’ so anything she says might not be true?
Perhaps alcohol played a factor because xanax or rohypnol was dropped in the drink?
I don’t know, maybe it’s just me – but if there isn’t much known about the case, maybe alcohol shouldn’t be mentioned until it’s known whether – indeed – alcohol did play a factor. And if it did, it should be mentioned in its full contact.
Because, you know, the mere presence of alcohol isn’t an excuse to rape someone.
And without context, mentioning alcohol perpetuates the myth that it is.