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  • Even in the legal system there's nothing to prevent Sally from saying she didn't see anything. Subpoenas don't necessarily force people to tell the truth. I know they're supposed to, but I've personally seen people show up and then fail to corroborate what they were supposed to. As long as they don't make a contradictory statement that can be counted as perjury, they get away with not saying anything,

    Comment


    • Originally posted by skydy View Post

      I give you: Asspantio!
      For those who don't remember:

      There once was COTH's "Appassionata"
      (Reminiscent of Beethoven's Sonata)
      An unfortunate typo
      Called her "Asspantio"
      And we laughed until breath we had nada.

      Sorry for the derail.
      Last edited by skydy; Aug. 30, 2019, 01:44 AM. Reason: Spelling

      Comment


      • Excellent derail!

        Many, many years ago I was in a really horrible situation at a job and was treated very badly. At a sibling's insistence, I went to see an attorney about it. He listened to the whole story, gave me Kleenex, asked some really good questions.

        He told me I absolutely had a case against the employer, and he would absolutely take the case on a contingency basis. There was a brief discussion of how we would have to go for damages beyond lost wages to make that worthwhile.

        And then he told me what it would be like to pursue it, and that I would be emotionally reliving the experience multiple times in front of critical audiences, and that the experience might be harder on me that the ordeal that brought me to his office. Even if we were able to get a settlement without going to court, the discovery process would be brutal. I would not be able to avoid being deposed and my personal life and emotional state would be fair game. He then told me to take a couple of days to think about, really think about it, and that it I was still up for it, he would represent me.

        I decide to move on, that it just wasn't worth the personal cost to pursue. And I did have some moments of "It's my duty to pursue it so they don't treat other people the same way." but I decided I needed to take care of me first.

        I have often thought of that attorney and that talk.

        It's easy to talk about subpoenas and compelling people to testify; but forcing victims to testify is forcing them to relive the abuse and tantamount to committing another assault. Forcing witnesses to testify isn't much better. You might be able to compel them to appear using subpoena power, but you can't compel cooperation or support.
        Proud member of the Cackling Yentas!

        Comment


        • As to reporting complains, there is a safe sport portal, easy to find, plus I assume it is linked on usef safe sport webpage. Not sure how long all that has been up and running. One wonders if the statistics are all Safe Sport including pre and post Congressional adoption in statute as the law has only been in force a little over a year.

          Comment


          • Originaly posted by newtopicnewalter
            then he told me what it would be like to pursue it, and that I would be emotionally reliving the experience multiple times in front of critical audiences, and that the experience might be harder on me that the ordeal that brought me to his office. Even if we were able to get a settlement without going to court, the discovery process would be brutal. I would not be able to avoid being deposed and my personal life and emotional state would be fair game.
            i'm sorry you had to go through all that - even thinking about it makes me ill.

            But (in general - not aimed at you) flip that around and think about how that applies to all those theoretical false reports people seem to be worried about. How many people would go through all that just for the pleasure of ruining someone's reputation? Even if it's not a public trial setting, it's not just like you call up SafeSport and say "gee, I'd like to take Trainer X down" and then -boom! - they're suspended for life.

            How many people would be willing to go through all that emotional pain of retelling stories that in retrospect, make them feel not only vulnerable but guilty and stupid as well and take on GM and all his entourage for some sort of revenge? I call vanishingly small.

            Comment


            • Originally posted by omare View Post
              As to reporting complains, there is a safe sport portal, easy to find, plus I assume it is linked on usef safe sport webpage. Not sure how long all that has been up and running. One wonders if the statistics are all Safe Sport including pre and post Congressional adoption in statute as the law has only been in force a little over a year.
              If this is in regards to my post, I am talking about the statistic noted about the number of people suspended by a NGO before SS came into existence. USEF has zero. That is abhorrent but if there was no way to report how could the number be anything but zero?

              One NGO which has many people banned before SS for sexual misconduct is of all things....Bowling. check out their stats. 53 with 48 of them coming from the NGO.

              To further clarify. If a person has been banned by their NGO, SS continues that ban and lists it on the site with the NGO listed as the adjucating body as well as the date of ban. I don't think they do any more investigation into those bans but uphold them.

              Comment


              • Originally posted by skydy View Post

                For those who don't remember:

                There once was COTH's "Appassionata"
                (Reminiscent of Beethoven's Sonata)
                An unfortunate typo
                Called her "Asspantio"
                And we laughed until breath we had nada.

                Sorry for the derail.
                Thank you so much for the derail.

                Comment


                • Originally posted by Roser123 View Post

                  First, I have to say that I’m very sorry for anyone who’s been a victim of sexual assault, and I applaud your bravery in sharing your stories here and especially of being willing to testify against your abuser.
                  Second, I was recently on the jury in a sexual assault case, and I disagree with your contention that “Lawyers want witnesses on the stand so they can cut them down, destroy their credibility, and poke holes in their story.” That was not at all my experience, and if the defense attorney had acted in such a way (in my case, anyway), it would have been to the extreme detriment of his client.
                  wow.

                  Let me clarify, it was not the prosecutions goal to cut me down, of course not. Also, my case wasn't just SA, it was also attempted murder along with it. So it's pretty complex and intense situation.

                  The defences job is try and destroy the witness. The crown went over all the things they expected to be thrown at me, and told me that it was going to be really really hard to hear what they put forward. The crown however, is not innocent. They were trying to pursuade me to accept a plea of uttering threats. Uttering threats!!!!! I said, I'm not accepting any please unless its to the actual attack, which is what eventually happened. But they think you are weak, vulnerable, and scared. Which I was scared, but I am not weak. My victim service worker told me she was so happy I didn't back down becuase all too often victims do. It's all about saving the court money, you know.
                  Boss Mare Eventing Blog

                  Comment


                  • I'll just also remind that some judges also make life hell for victims who testify

                    https://metro.co.uk/2019/07/10/judge...legs-10148430/
                    Boss Mare Eventing Blog

                    Comment


                    • Ok, so I'm getting the sense that the majority of COTHers don't want SafeSport to be given any means of requiring either victims or witnesses to participate--you want everything strictly voluntary. That's okay--as long as you realize that sometimes it means SafeSport won't be able to make a case because people won't want to stick their necks out against a powerful or popular trainer.

                      That raises one of the more subtle points of subpoenas. Sometimes, a witness wants the "cover" of a subpoena so it looks like they weren't actively trying to get someone in trouble, but they were "forced" to tell what they know. I know that firsthand because we had an issue with a neighbor who had dog-aggressive dogs. A woman whose dog had been attacked wanted me to attest to some other (less serious) incidents I had witnessed. I like my neighbor and have to continue living next door to her, so I was reluctant to take sides against her. With a subpoena, the decision was taken out of my hands. I preserved my relationship with my neighbor because she understood I was forced to tell what I knew. Like most decent people, I would never lie under oath, but I probably would have chosen to "not get involved" if not for the subpoena.

                      As to whether subpoena power would be theoretically possible: I have no doubt SafeSport could require members to cooperate in investigations/arbitrations as a condition of being a USEF member in good standing (just like SafeSport takes the position it can punish aiding and abetting). I agree the issue is trickier (but ultimately not impossible, I think) with non-members, like some non-horse person who was just strolling down the street and witnessed something untoward.

                      Comment


                      • Originally posted by Horsegirl's Mom View Post
                        Ok, so I'm getting the sense that the majority of COTHers don't want SafeSport to be given any means of requiring either victims or witnesses to participate--you want everything strictly voluntary. That's okay--as long as you realize that sometimes it means SafeSport won't be able to make a case because people won't want to stick their necks out against a powerful or popular trainer.

                        That raises one of the more subtle points of subpoenas. Sometimes, a witness wants the "cover" of a subpoena so it looks like they weren't actively trying to get someone in trouble, but they were "forced" to tell what they know. I know that firsthand because we had an issue with a neighbor who had dog-aggressive dogs. A woman whose dog had been attacked wanted me to attest to some other (less serious) incidents I had witnessed. I like my neighbor and have to continue living next door to her, so I was reluctant to take sides against her. With a subpoena, the decision was taken out of my hands. I preserved my relationship with my neighbor because she understood I was forced to tell what I knew. Like most decent people, I would never lie under oath, but I probably would have chosen to "not get involved" if not for the subpoena.

                        As to whether subpoena power would be theoretically possible: I have no doubt SafeSport could require members to cooperate in investigations/arbitrations as a condition of being a USEF member in good standing (just like SafeSport takes the position it can punish aiding and abetting). I agree the issue is trickier (but ultimately not impossible, I think) with non-members, like some non-horse person who was just strolling down the street and witnessed something untoward.
                        You are assuming everyone with a sanction will appeal.

                        I do not believe that is the case.


                        And some neighbors would still be mad even if a subpoena was involved. But I am glad yours was not.

                        Comment


                        • Originally posted by Jealoushe View Post

                          wow.

                          Let me clarify, it was not the prosecutions goal to cut me down, of course not. Also, my case wasn't just SA, it was also attempted murder along with it. So it's pretty complex and intense situation.

                          The defences job is try and destroy the witness. The crown went over all the things they expected to be thrown at me, and told me that it was going to be really really hard to hear what they put forward. The crown however, is not innocent. They were trying to pursuade me to accept a plea of uttering threats. Uttering threats!!!!! I said, I'm not accepting any please unless its to the actual attack, which is what eventually happened. But they think you are weak, vulnerable, and scared. Which I was scared, but I am not weak. My victim service worker told me she was so happy I didn't back down becuase all too often victims do. It's all about saving the court money, you know.
                          I don't know for sure because obviously I haven't been through it, but I feel like the 4th season of Broadchurch really showed what it is like for the rape victim. How everything she did leading up to the rape was scrutinized, and how it all played out and ruined several lives and friendships. That last season is extremely emotional!

                          Comment


                          • Originally posted by Horsegirl's Mom View Post
                            Ok, so I'm getting the sense that the majority of COTHers don't want SafeSport to be given any means of requiring either victims or witnesses to participate--you want everything strictly voluntary. That's okay--as long as you realize that sometimes it means SafeSport won't be able to make a case because people won't want to stick their necks out against a powerful or popular trainer.
                            Safesport's code says every USEF member is a mandatory reporter. How many people (equestrians) do you think will step up when they see something and report it? How many do you think would be willing to be interviewed if contacted, let alone testify at an arbitration? When I was interviewed, I was asked if I knew of anyone that might have information, might also have been abused, was present at the same time, etc. The same few names came up several times from several witnesses; those people wanted nothing to do with the process.
                            I think that is and has been one of the biggest problem with the H/J world. Everyone needs to be "friends". Trainer A may be judging a horse show you want to go to, or you may have a horse for sale and they have a customer looking for one. I am happy that SS now handles all sexual abuse complaints because I think the AHSA, USEF Hearing committees were not able to handle it in an impartial way.

                            Comment


                            • Originally posted by juststartingout View Post
                              Just looked at the SafeSport US Sanctions page to see what is out there... Some interesting data

                              Permanently ineligible, by Governing Body , By SafeSport

                              Figure Skating 19 , 13 , 6
                              Swimming (stopped counting at) 50, 42, 9
                              Equestrian 19, 0, 19

                              My counts could be a bit off as it was done quickly off the website - but some interesting data here
                              I thought Randy Cates was banned by the USEF/USHJA. in 2015. Shouldn't this be listed as 1 for the NGB?

                              Comment


                              • Originally posted by Keep it Simple View Post

                                I thought Randy Cates was banned by the USEF/USHJA. in 2015. Shouldn't this be listed as 1 for the NGB?
                                You are correct. The count is one. I just pulled it up.

                                Comment


                                • AlterHalter2019 Sob
                                  McDowell Racing Stables

                                  Home Away From Home

                                  Comment


                                  • Originally posted by AlterHalter2019

                                    I was a victim of rape and sexual assault in the military. My case was one of the rare ones that actually made it to court martial (trial). I testified with CID for 9 hours going over what happened. That was relatively easy because he had been accused of this before so I wasn’t their first victim which boosted my credibility. I have heard horror stories of COD asking victims if they truly believe they were raped, if they did anything to provoke it, etc.

                                    The defense attorney absolutely tore me to pieces before and during the trial. I had to meet him a few weeks before where he tried to get me to consent to allowing his client (my rapist) to retire without benefits. He would get out at his current rank and just go on his way. Hell no. He pulled pieces of my testimony out and tried to make them something they weren’t (“well why did you go to his house for the night if you didn’t want to sleep with him?” Uh, maybe because it was past the Army’s curfew and if I walked back to post I would have been arrested and at risk for losing my career... which I lost anyway so I guess it would have been better than dealing with the psychological damage I have now after the rape and trial). During trial I spent HOURS on the stand. Somewhere between 9-12 hours. Defense attorneys tried to rip apart my character. They tried to say because I was an officer (granted, a “baby” officer at a 2LT) I knew better than to drink with a non-commissioned Officer (with 15 years experience ranking as a senior NCO). They said that me texting with him on the weekend was asking for it because I said “goodnight” a couple of times or because I didn’t tell him to stop making nasty sexual comments (because I was embarrassed and it was easier to ignore them). They went though high school and college, and because I had a man proposition me for sexual at 18 after grooming me for years, that decreased my credibility. They wanted to know how many guys I had slept with. If I had ever “cried rape” before. Why did I ignore red flags? On and on and on. And the ass himself didn’t even stand up and testify.

                                    Im not exaggerating when I say that the process of going to trial was more excruciating and psychologically painful than the rape itself. I could never tell someone going through the same thing to testify because it was literal hell. I have never felt so small, so ashamed, and so embarrassed for something in my life even though I never asked for it.

                                    I 100% was worked with by my lawyers. I was told how to sit, what kind of facial expressions to show, how fast to talk, how to better phrase things to be more clear, to state things as a matter of fact as I could vs acting unsure. I went over my story time and time again with my lawyers, with them pretending to be the defense, etc etc. but nothing could prepare me for what it would be like. To be threat broken down and made to look like I was asking for it and that I was in the wrong the whole time, in front of people that I knew and worked with on a daily basis, it was horrible. To this day I cannot step into a court room or watch a trial on TV without a panic attack.

                                    Oh, and he was found not guilty of rape, after the hell j went through he was found not guilty because his lawyers were so good at poking holes into my soul and my character. You are welcome to disagree with it, but you’re wrong. It 100% does happen. Any good defense attorney is going to make a witness for the prosecution look inconsistent or as non-credible as possible.
                                    I’m so sorry. There are no words.

                                    This is is exactly why the SafeSport method is needed. While I am open to the fact that there may be “growing pains” that need to be ironed out, I wholeheartedly believe they developed exactly the type of process necessary to effectively remove predators from sport.

                                    The law repeatedly fails to stop sexual misconduct. I don’t know how many heart wrenching stories need to be told to get that point across.
                                    Don't fall for a girl who fell for a horse just to be number two in her world... ~EFO

                                    Comment


                                    • Originally posted by Texarkana View Post


                                      This is is exactly why the SafeSport method is needed. While I am open to the fact that there may be “growing pains” that need to be ironed out, I wholeheartedly believe they developed exactly the type of process necessary to effectively remove predators from sport.

                                      The law repeatedly fails to stop sexual misconduct. I don’t know how many heart wrenching stories need to be told to get that point across.
                                      I think most of us agree SafeSport is needed. When you talk about the "type of process" SafeSport developed, what features do you feel will make it more effective than the law?

                                      Comment


                                      • Originally posted by Texarkana View Post

                                        I’m so sorry. There are no words.

                                        This is is exactly why the SafeSport is needed. While I am open to the fact that there may be “growing pains” that need to be ironed out, I wholeheartedly believe they developed exactly the type of process necessary to effectively remove predators from sport.

                                        The law repeatedly fails to stop sexual misconduct. I don’t know how many heart wrenching stories need to be told to get that point across.
                                        AMEN.

                                        I don't know about the others - but I much prefer the term survivor, over victim. I certainly was a victim once - but I am a victim no more.

                                        Fate whispers to the warrior "you cannot withstand the storm" and the warrior whispers back "I am the storm"

                                        Comment


                                        • AlterHalter2019

                                          What a horrible ordeal. i'm so sorry.

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