Spain’s government has introduced a new law regarding consent with the goal of removing ambiguity in rape cases.
Under the law, consent would have to be explicit. It states that “yes means yes” and anything else, including silence, means no. Sex without explicit consent would therefore be considered rape.
The move follows outrage over the verdict in the la manada (wolf pack) case. The five men involved were accused of gang-raping an 18-year-old woman in Pamplona during the bull-running festival.
Two of the men filmed the assault, during which the woman is silent, doesn’t move, and has her eyes closed. The judges interpreted this as consent – one judge even commented that she appeared to be enjoying herself – and the charge was dropped from rape to the lesser crime of sexual assault.
Under Spanish law, rape must involve violence and intimidation. The la manada ruling provoked outrage and led to demonstrations across the country. The five men are out on bail pending an appeal against their nine-year sentence. Among them are a soldier and a member of the civil guard, both of whom have been returned to duty.
In her summing up for the prosecution, Elena Sarasate said: “The defendants want us to believe that on that night they met an 18-year-old girl, living a normal life, who after 20 minutes of conversation with people she didn’t know agreed to group sex involving every type of penetration, sometimes simultaneously, without using a condom.”
Proposing the law, Carmen Calvo Poyato, Spain’s deputy prime minister and equality minister, said: “If a woman does not expressly say yes, then everything else is no.”
Patricia Faraldo Cabana, a law professor at the university of A Coruña, who helped draft the law, said the proposal understood consent not just as something verbal but also tacit, as expressed in body language.
“It can still be rape even if the victim doesn’t resist,” she said. “If she is naked, actively taking part and enjoying herself, there is obviously consent. If she’s crying, inert like an inflatable doll and clearly not enjoying herself, then there isn’t.”
In a letter to a Spanish TV station, the la manada victim wrote: “Don’t keep quiet about it because if you do you’re letting them win. No one should have to go through this. No one should have to regret having a drink, talking to people at a fiesta, walking home alone or wearing a miniskirt.”
The law mirrors similar legislation that came into force in Sweden at the beginning of July.
A high-risk sex offender was re-arrested and subsequently released on bail, Toronto Police say. In a news release on Friday afternoon, police noted that the man was arrested Wednesday for breaching previous bail conditions. This is the second time the man is alleged to have breached those conditions since his initial release from prison on February 14, 2018.
Joseph Thayakaran Joseph, 45, was released after an eight year sentence for two counts of sexual assault, sexual assault with a weapon, three counts of forcible confinement, and assault. Joseph ran a successful headhunting company when he was arrested in July 2005 for preying on two women.
He was convicted in 2008 of three counts of forcible confinement, two counts of sexual assault, one count of sexual assault with a weapon and one count of assault.
At his trial, Joseph admitted he pretended to be a vice-president of entertainment for media giant Viacom to seduce 20 to 30 women from 1995 and 2005. He became violent in 2005, forcibly confining and sexually assaulting two women — one at gunpoint.
Joseph was released from prison on February 14, 2018 under strict court-ordered conditions that included reporting weekly to police, not entering into an intimate relationship with a woman unless she was identified to police and not using social media without specified permission.
On the same day, police issued a public warning about the sex attacker’s release out of concern he was a “high-risk” to re-offend.
Joseph was re-arrested less than two months later, on April 6, 2018, and police alleged Joseph was using dating sites to pose as a wealthy business man, while using photos of other men. Joseph was later released after posting bail.
According to detectives, Joseph was arrested on again July 11,2018, but was released yet again on July 13, 2018 for breaching his court-ordered release conditions – making this second such arrest since walking out of prison on Valentine’s Day.
Constable Caroline de Kloet said the 45-year-old has allegedly been using dating websites, specifically seekingarrangement.ca, and calling himself Dr. Lewisus.
“It’s alleged he claims to be a doctor and makes offers to help women financially or with medical treatment,” she said. “It is further alleged that he offers prescriptions for medical marijuana.”
According to the bail conditions provided in the media release, Joseph must report to police weekly, is barred from entering a relationship with a woman until they have been identified to police, cannot use social media accounts without permission, and cannot contact a person on social media without permission 24 hours in advance. He is required to provide social media passwords to police, and must report his employment or change of addresses or phone numbers to police within 24 hours.
Police are asking that anyone who may have had contact with him to contact investigators at 416-808-7474.
TIJUANA, Mexico — Jade Quintanilla had come to the northernmost edge of Mexico from El Salvador looking for help and safety, but five months had passed since she had arrived in this border town, and she was still too scared to cross into the United States and make her request for asylum.
Violence and persecution in Central America had brought many transgender women such as Ms. Quintanilla to this crossroads, along with countless other L.G.B.T. migrants. They are desperate to escape an unstable region where they are distinct targets.
Friends in San Salvador, Ms. Quintanilla said, were killed outright or humiliated in myriad ways: They were forced to cut their long hair and live as men; they were beaten; they were coerced into sex work; they were threatened into servitude as drug mules and gun traffickers.
Still, just a few miles from the border, Ms. Quintanilla, 22, hesitated. “I’ve gone up to the border many times and turned back,” she said in a bare concrete room at the group home where she was living, holding her thin arms at the elbows. “What if they ask, ‘Why would we accept a person like you in our country?’ I think about that a lot. It would be like putting a bullet to my head, if I arrive and they say no.”
While the Trump administration has tightened regulations on asylum qualifications related to gang violence and domestic abuse, migrants still can request asylum on the basis of persecution for their L.G.B.T. identity. But their chances of success are far from certain, and the journey to even reach the American border is especially risky for L.G.B.T. migrants.
Trans women in particular encounter persistent abuse and harassment in Mexico at the hands of drug traffickers, rogue immigration agents and other migrants, according to lawyers and activists. Once they reach the United States, they regularly face hardship, as well.
There are no numbers available disclosing how many L.G.B.T. migrants seek asylum at the border each year or their success rate, but lawyers and activists say that the number of gay, lesbian and trans people seeking asylum each year is at least in the hundreds.
In weighing whether to risk the journey north, many L.G.B.T. migrants from Central America gamble that the road ahead cannot be worse than what they are leaving behind.
Victor Clark-Alfaro, an immigration expert at San Diego State University who is based in Tijuana, said that he has noticed more openly L.G.B.T. people in recent years making the journey to the border with hopes of seeking asylum. He said they are often the victims of powerful criminal gangs in Central America and Mexico — but also of bigoted neighbors, police officers and strangers.
“The ones who can’t hide their sexuality and gender, there’s a huge aggression toward them. And of them, trans women are the ones who are most heavily targeted,” Mr. Clark-Alfaro said. In Central America and Mexico, “almost everyone is Catholic, and so the machismo and religious sensibilities provoke attacks against people who break gender norms.”
The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, an arm of the Organization of American States, has spoken out against the high rates of violence against L.G.B.T. people in Central American countries and Mexicoand has noted that the crimes against them are often committed with impunity.
Shortly after Ms. Quintanilla and two friends began their journey north to Tijuana from Tapachula, in the southern Mexican state of Chiapas, in January, they were robbed. With no more money, they walked along the highway for long stretches of time in between rides, about 13 days altogether, Ms. Quintanilla said.
In Veracruz, the group boarded the so-called Beast, a train in Mexico often used by migrants to travel north; there, she said, she was sexually exploited.
“They say you can ride on top of the train,” Ms. Quintanilla said. “But the reality is different. We had to give our services so that they’d let us on. They were abusing us the whole way through. And if we refused, they’d threaten to push us off.”
She reached Tijuana in February and was taken in by Jardin de las Mariposas, an L.G.B.T.-focused drug rehabilitation home that has hosted dozens of Central American migrants in recent months. The director of the Mariposas, Yolanda Rocha, with whom Ms. Quintanilla has spoken about the journey, vouched for the account Ms. Quintanilla shared with The New York Times. She said that Ms. Quintanilla had appeared traumatized and exhausted when she arrived at Mariposas.
Warnings about trans migrants being neglected and abused in United States custody have amplified fears for Ms. Quintanilla and other trans migrants. A 2016 report by Human Rights Watch detailed pervasive sexual harassment and assault at detention facilities, based on interviews with dozens of transgender women.
In May, a transgender woman named Roxana Hernandez died in New Mexico, while held in custody by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, after experiencing cardiac arrest and H.I.V.-related complications.
In interviews with The Times, several trans women described humiliation by guards and said they had been sexually assaulted by other detainees.
Seventy-two migrants who identify as transgender were being held in custody by ICE as of June 30, according to data provided by the agency. The vast majority are from Central America and Mexico. It is difficult to pinpoint how many L.G.B.T. people might be in detention because they often choose not to disclose their sexual orientation or gender identity, for fear of discrimination, even though it could help their asylum case.
“A lot of the queer men experience threats and physical assault and sometimes sexual assault. The trans women who are put into men’s facilities experience sexual assault at remarkably high numbers,” said Aaron Morris, a lawyer and the executive director of Immigration Equality, which provides legal assistance related to immigration and asylum to L.G.B.T. people.
ICE operates a housing unit specifically for transgender detainees at the Cibola County Correctional Center in New Mexico. Activists say that the center is far better than others, where trans women are held alongside men. But many trans women are reluctant to relocate to the Cibola center, Mr. Morris said, if it is far away from their lawyers or networks of family members.
Reports of abuse at detention centers range from guards making fun of natural facial hair that grows in between grooming to other inmates threatening violence. Of 237 allegations of sexual abuse or assault filed by ICE detainees in 2017, the agency’s records show that 11 were filed by transgender people.
In some cases, migrants say they are not taken seriously when they report attacks.
One trans woman from Honduras said she had been harassed and sexually assaulted several times by men while in custody at the Otay Mesa Detention Center in San Diego, which is operated by CoreCivic. The woman requested anonymity because her asylum request is currently under review.
Speaking in an interview with her lawyer present in Los Angeles, she described several safety issues that stem from the center grouping trans women with men and having them share bathrooms. At one point, she said, she awoke to a man forcing himself onto her and shoving his tongue into her mouth; she said she was told to ignore it by the guards, even though she was afraid that she would get in trouble because of rules against physical contact.
In other instances, she said, men would pull back the curtains in the shower to masturbate in front of her and other trans women.
“They say we have support and protection in there, but the reality is different,” the woman said. “I’m not the only one. Ask any trans woman, they will each have a bad story about something that happened to them in detention.”
In a statement, ICE spokeswoman Danielle Bennett said that the agency has “zero tolerance for all forms of sexual abuse or assault” and that it investigates every allegation reported.
Activists have demanded that the government avoid holding trans women and other L.G.B.T. migrants in detention altogether. Just over half of trans people are held at the specialized unit at the Cibola center, the ICE spokeswoman said, whereas the dozens spread across other facilities are “housed in units at the facility based on their physical gender.”
The Honduran woman said she was disappointed to find the guards at the center where she was held to be so dismissive. In her hometown, she said, she had been viciously attacked by a man who struck her with a machete. She never reported the crime, though he had targeted her several times before, she said. “In Honduras, it’s better not to go to the police, because that just makes it worse. If they don’t kill me, they’ll kill one of my family members.”
Raiza Daniela Aparicio Hernandez, 33, a transgender human-rights activist from El Salvador, said she was physically assaulted in 2016 by four police officers in her home in San Salvador, which she shared with her boyfriend. The officers had harassed and threatened her before, arriving at their home without a warrant and demanding to be let in, before barging in and assaulting them. “They beat me. They beat me a long time,” she said.
Ms. Aparicio Hernandez and her partner tried to file a formal complaint about the abuse in El Salvador she said, but they ran into obstacles along the way. She left El Salvador in June 2017 and arrived at the San Ysidro point of entry, on the border between Tijuana and San Diego, to request asylum.
Before speaking to The Times, Ms. Aparacio Hernandez shared her account with her lawyer. She won asylum through the courts on the merits of her case.
“Leaving my country was such a hard decision,” she said. “I’ve seen a lot of friends die in this fight, at the hands of the government, and people being beat and tortured. And this is happening at the hands of police officers. It’s sad, and it’s difficult, but you have to fight.”
Marcos Williamson, the detention relief coordinator for Transcend Arizona, a Phoenix-based nonprofit group that helps L.G.B.T. migrants, said asylum seekers who are released from detention on bond often struggle to make ends meet because they are given neither benefits nor work permits. L.G.B.T. people, who often do not have the support of family members, are particularly alone.
For now, Ms. Quintanilla feels safe at Mariposas, though she has been accosted on the streets of Tijuana and harassed, she said. She is grateful to the center for taking her in. And she is not yet ready for what comes next in her long journey.
“I decided to leave because I didn’t want to die. It would just be too much for them to reject me,” she said. “What good would it have been to flee my country?”
The four Ohio teens who pleaded guilty to dropping a sandbag off a freeway overpass that killed a 22-year-old man were given a suspended sentence and ordered to a treatment center on Friday.
Marquis Byrd was the passenger in a vehicle that was hit by the sandbag dropped onto Interstate 75 in Toledo last December. Byrd was left in critical condition and died three days later in the hospital.
And The Wine Is Getting Active On TEE SPRING
Click Image for shopping page.
We don’t know why 2 T’s are showing up in the image.
In late June, members and supporters of Desiree Alliance, a sex work advocacy organization, gathered in the Los Angeles office of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) to begin organizing for the legalization of sex work. The event featured nearly a dozen sex workers, including adult actress and Los Angeles-based sex work activist, Siouxsie Q.
Attendees at the meeting drafted a manifesto called the National Sex Worker Anti-Criminalization Principles, which author and escort Maggie McNeill described as a document designed to “provide a working template for a national platform” for sex-worker rights.
London Pride was led by TERF group; They call to take the L out of LGBTQ+. Calling CIS LESBIAN's CREATE + SHARE A 5 SEC VIDEO 'I am a cis female lesbian, I support trans rights – trans women do not erase me. Keep the L with the T’ #LwiththeT#notadebatepic.twitter.com/m2PpHQ4OyB
On June 5, Nikki Yovino went to jail. She had maintained for the previous 20 months that she was raped by two Sacred Heart University students in the bathroom at a house party. The men she accused said it was consensual, and that’s what prosecutors and police in Bridgeport, Connecticut, believed too.
The state charged Yovino with filing a false report to law enforcement and evidence tampering, based on their allegation that she’d had a rape kit performed while lying about having been raped. Yovino, 19, faced up to six years in prison. She had pleaded not guilty, but on the morning jury selection was to begin, Yovino took a plea deal to spend a year behind bars. She was taken away in handcuffs while her mom dabbed tears from her eyes in the courtroom.
It’s Moral Monday in The Wine Cellar 7/2/18
We find it moral to support Sex Workers Rights and gosh darn hope Alexandria Ocasio Cortez does as well.
We’ll lead off with that and get into our Wine Cellar news and comment that you know we’re going to do.
When Kristan Morgan joined the U.S. Bureau of Prisons three years ago, the 30-year-old nurse expected to spend her days caring for the chronically sick and injured inside the nation’s largest correctional system.
What she didn’t expect: Being abruptly plucked from the busy medical unit in Tallahassee to pull guard duty in cell blocks — including a wing for solitary confinement.
An off-duty officer with the Chicago Police Department has died after he was “senselessly murdered” in a downtown building Tuesday afternoon, police said.
Commander Paul Bauer, of the 18th District, was chasing a suspect when he was “shot multiple
times,” Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson said at a news conference.
Johnson stated that earlier Tuesday afternoon, Chicago police saw someone “acting suspiciously” who quickly fled from the tactical officers. A description of the suspect was broadcast on police radio, and when Bauer, who was off-duty, saw the offender, he reportedly approached the individual.
A West Virginia city has agreed to pay a former police officer $175,000 to settle a wrongful-termination lawsuit after he was fired following his decision not to shoot a distraught suspect who was holding a gun.
The lawsuit accused the Weirton Police Department of wrongfully terminating officer Stephen Mader after he chose not to shoot a 23-year-old man while responding to a domestic disturbance in 2016.
“At the end of the day, I’m happy to put this chapter of my life to bed,” Mader said in a news release by the American Civil Liberties Union of West Virginia.