February 5, 1990: In Nashua, New Hampshire, teenager Jennifer Cleveland is arrested and charged with falsely reporting a rape. On February 12, she enters a plea of no contest for which she receives a short suspended sentence, but the following day she insists she really was raped and claims detectives coerced her into signing a confession because they didn’t want to take the time to investigate.

Detective Sergeant Alan Stuart saw it differently:

“First she said she didn’t know the person or where it happened, then a couple of minutes later, she said she knew the person and where it happened. She admitted she lied. There’s was no need for the investigation to go any further.”

Who do you believe? Here is a clue: real rape victims have bruises.

[The above is based on a report by Kris Frieswick in the New Hampshire Sunday News, February 18, 1990, page 11A, (accessed through NewsBank)].


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