AN INTERNATIONAL TIMELINE OF FALSE RAPE ALLEGATIONS 1674-2015: Introduction

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This is the largest timeline and database of false rape allegations ever compiled. It is also a work in progress; it was published initially on June 13, 2016. I will add cases as resources and especially time permit, but it will never be completed.

The starting date is the beginning of the Old Bailey sessions. I have found a few earlier cases, but decided against including them. Obviously, the further back in time one goes, the sparser, generally, is the documentation.

Like most criminal cases, false rape allegations are seldom played out in a single day. The allegation may not come to light for some time; if the false accuser is charged with an offence there may be several court appearances, and so on. Some of the women listed herein have made multiple false allegations against one or more men. For the sake of simplicity I have for the most part entered only one date on the timeline for each perpetrator, although others may be found in the text. The date may be the date the rape never happened, a court date, the date the case was reported by a national or local news source...At times when I allude to dates I make what seem obvious references, for example, one entry reads in part: “May 21, 2009: A Nigerian student studying at Oxford Brookes University tells police fellow Nigerian Kunle Ogunmola raped her on April 13, 2009.”

The casual reader may ask was it necessary to write 2009 twice? The answer is no, but I have used this style for the sake of clarity, and for the aforementioned reason that most false rape allegations play out over a period of time, some over a considerable period, so it is best to be precise and unambiguous about important dates wherever possible.

All the cases included herein are (in my humble opinion) confirmed false allegations; I have not included cases simply because an accused was acquitted or because an investigation was discontinued. Such desiderata include the controversial 1857 case of Ann Mara and Dr Popham; the attempted rape victim who reported two alleged rapes (one by two men) some 13 months prior to the Seattle incident (the third of which clearly did happen the way she claimed); the case of the professional snooker player who was tried for rape twice and acquitted both times; and the two police officers from the Surrey force who were cleared in 2005 of the rape of an assault victim with whom they’d had sex while on duty. In any case where I have the slightest doubt about the falsity of the allegation(s), I have indicated so. Having said all that, I do not expect everyone to agree with me 100% that every case enumerated here is one of false rape, indeed there are some women - like Lisa Longstaff and Joanne Belknap - who never met a false accuser they didn’t like.

I have not included cases simply because the allegation was suspected of being false; similarly I have not excluded cases in which the complainant was not criminally charged with making a false complaint, or in which the authorities decided not to proceed for whatever reason.

By and large I have not included mere allegations of indecent assault, but I have included a few of the more outrageous claims of attempted rape. Where these lesser crimes have been included it is generally because of aggravating features or special circumstances. It should be pointed out though that some headlines are misleading, for example, a newspaper may refer to an attempted rape or even an indecent assault as a rape. An extreme case is the 2008 Ashley Todd hoax in which a young woman claimed to have been the victim of a bizarre politically motivated assault. You will find claims all over the Web that she was sexually assaulted or even raped. Todd never claimed to have been raped, and the truth came out two days after the phantom assault. The nature of an alleged offence can also be unclear from the text of an article. This can be due to sloppy reporting, honest errors, or the usual fog of war. In the 24 hour global village, information flies around the world at the press of a button, so it is inevitable that honest mistakes - everything from misspelt names to premature obituaries - will be reported widely. Unfortunately, my time is limited, so I cannot research every single case in minute detail.

I have not included a number of cases which are claimed to have been false but which in my humble opinion were not, for example, in 1951, seven black men were executed in the American Deep South for the 1949 gang-rape of a white woman. Because of the racial aspect, the usual suspects have proclaimed these men innocent. While the sentence was Draconian, any honest, objective person who examines the facts of the case will surely conclude that a gang-rape had been committed.

Nor have I included every published claim of a woman, usually some sort of celebrity, who says she was raped. Such claims are of course all but impossible to refute the same way they are impossible to corroborate. Strangely it has become almost a status symbol or a badge or honour for some women to claim they were raped. In October 2013, the singer Madonna claimed she was raped at the age of 19 shortly after relocating to New York City but was too humiliated to report it. In 2014, the much younger singer-songwriter Lady Gaga claimed she was likewise raped at the age of 19. A music producer was named (by someone else) as her rapist.

In 2015, singer-songwriter Chrissie Hynde claimed she was gang-raped at the age of 21, and caused outrage when she appeared to blame herself for the violation. I have to say I don’t believe any of these claims, and I hope they are not true, especially the one by Chrissie Hynde, whom I’ve always liked.

Finally, the actress Pamela Anderson appears to have been unlucky in the extreme because she claims to have been (sexually) molested by a female babysitter at the age of 6; raped by a 25 year old man at the age of 12; and a few years later to have been gang-raped by 7 individuals, one of whom was her boyfriend. It is possible that one, two or even all three of these claims are true; personally I don’t believe any of them, especially the first one.

I have not included any of the above, similar doubtful allegations, nor the usual Internet garbage; this is a serious chronology, not a collection of celebrity fashion statements, much less a rumour mill. I have though included a number of false rape allegations which were not made to the legal authorities, see for example Judy Owens, who cried wolf a decade before she was really raped.

Another type of false rape case not included here is that when a rape has actually been committed but for whatever reason(s) the wrong person has been convicted. Such cases are not false rape allegations as such, rather they are properly termed miscarriages of justice. See though the entry for FALSE AND TRUE.

By and large I have not included false allegations of statutory rape; for those who may not know the legal definition, this alludes usually to when a girl under the age of consent has sex willingly with someone over the age of consent, the point being that by definition she cannot consent. Statutory rape - by whatever name - is extremely common, and may involve a youth of 16 or 17 taking a 15 year old to bed - or as in this 2003 case, to the toilets at Leamington Spa railway station. Generally the legal authorities take a pragmatic view of this, as do parents, and no action is taken provided the girl is not being abused. Occasionally this can backfire, as in the outrageous Rotherham child sex abuse scandal which saw girls, some as young as 13, riding around in taxis with men and at times being subjected to horrific sexual violation when they should have been in school.

At times, an underage boy may have sex with an older female, often a teacher who gives him lessons after school. In such cases the victim doesn’t usually complain until the affair is ended. More often though, both the girl and the boy are under the age of consent, so are they raping each other?

For the most part, I have not included cases in which the accused have been tried for rape but convicted only of lesser offences - the disgraced TV presenter Stuart Hall springs to mind.

Finally, finally! I have not included false rape allegations relating to war as such, including national/regional conflicts, allegations like this. As has often been said, the first casualty of war is truth; obviously some rapes happen in war-time, but under military discipline, rape is capital. The case of Leroy Henry is a striking example of this. Individual cases of for example ASYLUM SNEAKERS have been included, but not state-sponsored black propaganda.

To explain the purpose of this timeline, I can do no better than repeat what I said in a previous article:

A striking feature of every widely reported false rape case is the bleating of vested interests, usually so-called women’s groups, to the effect that this is an extremely rare phenomenon, that for every false allegation of rape there are five, ten, a dozen or a hundred genuine rapes that are not reported, and that our greatest concern should be not for the innocent victim who may have had his name dragged through the mud, sat in a police cell for hours or even in a prison cell for weeks, months or years, but for the effect this extremely rare event may have in discouraging genuine victims from coming forward.

The far from subtle subtext is that rape is such a heinous crime that not only should we lock up all perpetrators forever and a day, but that we should tear up the rule book in order to do so. Rules of evidence and procedure that are applied to other crimes should not be applied to rape. Any woman, any female, who makes an allegation of rape or lesser sexual offence against any man at any time is to be believed uncritically, even if the allegation is made weeks, months or years later by an individual who was not under any sort of duress or restraint. Questioning alleged victims about their accusations is seen as tantamount not only to disbelief but to a repetition of the act.

Now I will augment that statement, the claim that false allegations of rape are no more common than false allegations of other crimes simply does not wash. False allegations of some crimes are indeed rare, often because of the limited motives of false accusers. How many motives are there for falsely accusing a man of theft? False allegations of murder are sometimes made, but most often these are false only in the sense that the wrong person has been accused, or because an accidental death or a suicide has been mistaken for murder. As with murder there is almost always a body, one would expect allegations that were both false and malicious to be extremely rare. Rape is very different, as will be seen from this database, some women will cry rape at the drop of a hat, or more often after dropping their knickers then regretting it.

All the cases listed in that original, limited timeline, are included here, most with more detail. For an analysis of why women, girls (and occasionally men and boys) lie about being raped, please check out the (relatively) short supplementary list of the types of false rape accuser. On the subject of links, although I have linked to webpages (mostly archived versions), or to screengrabs and occasionally videos, I have not linked to all allegations that received substantial publicity. To take just one example, the case of Oxford student Ben Sullivan was all over the media - tabloids, heavies and TV, so anyone looking for it ten years from now will have no problem finding it. In some instances I have given citations rather than links, as for example when the information concerned was obtained from a subscription database such as NewsBank.

The first thing the reader will probably notice about this database is the dearth of false allegations predating the modern era. There are reasons for this. One is that it has been compiled overwhelmingly - but not exclusively - on-line. Another is that in days of yore, false allegations were far less frequent, primarily one would expect because rape was capital. It is also true that at one time a woman was expected to resist her assailant physically. When one allows for the context, this was reasonable, just as it was reasonable to execute a man for murder, and in some jurisdictions to cut off the hand of the habitual thief. With the lower standard of proof required nowadays, often only an alleged victim snivelling into her handkerchief, and with the often pitiful sanctions imposed on false accusers, one would expect there to be more false allegations. One would also expect them to be more readily detected with resourceful policing, not to mention forensics including CCTV and at times both falsely accused men and false accusers recording their actions on their mobile phones. Finally of course, absolutely everything is recorded today, from the sensational to the banal.

Probably the second thing most people will notice is the heavy bias toward England, the UK generally, the United States, the English-speaking world and reports in English generally. As I am a Londoner born and bred, having lived here the greater part of my life, this needs no explaining. I have though endeavoured to collate reports from countries that don’t speak English as a first language.

The third thing the reader may well notice as he progresses through some of the sadder cases is that even in the late 20th and early 21st Centuries it was and is remarkably easy for a man to be dragged into court, put on trial, or even for his life to be utterly destroyed on no credible evidence whatsoever, in short on nothing more than the ravings of a demented or simply malicious female, weeks, months or even years later, and in this connection we may cite the cases of the evil little tart Olumide Fadayomi who drove a man to suicide; Brian Banks, who lost five of the best years of his life; Ricky Jenkins, accused of historical sex offences when he was just 19 years old; and just to show this can happen to women too, the former nun Nora Wall.

The definition of rape has been changed in recent years. Decades ago I saw in print a definition that sums it up in a nutshell:

The illicit carnal knowledge of a woman effected by force, intimidation, threats, or deceit as to the nature of the act.

If in the above the word woman is replaced by the phrase “live human being” (live to exclude necrophilia, and human being to exclude the extreme depravity of bestiality), it covers everything, including both anal and oral rape. All the above are included in this database along with a handful of false allegations which may not include actual rape due to the vagueness of media reports.

Also included are sundry items such as books, films and reports that relate to this subject in some way.

Two observations on my style. Reports are started in the present tense; not something I planned initially, it just happened. I am known as both a plain speaker and a plain writer, but I accept that some people may find my style acerbic. I have tried to temper it, but some of the allegations enumerated herein warrant only the utmost contempt.

Before the credits, one final final thought, although some of the cases herein are discussed in considerable depth, most are not, and if the reader wants to obtain more detailed information, he will have to do his own research, although with especially some of the earlier cases, that is a non-starter.

This timeline is my own unaided work, so any errors of fact or of inference are entirely my own, but my thanks as ever to my site sponsors who helped make my bringing it to the world possible. Thanks also to anyone and everyone with whom I have spoken confidentially in connection with its compilation, and to Alexander Economou. Thanks to Counsel for his assistance with the transcripts. Finally, thanks to the contributors to sundry dedicated false allegation and related websites whose collation and research has been responsible for many of the false rape cases listed here, in particular but not limited to A Voice For Men (including AVFM Forum), Community of the Wrongly Accused/False Rape Society Blogspot, and SAFARI.


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