The Consequences of False Rape AllegationsMountain View

A Rolling Stone articled published November 2014 featured a young woman identified as Jackie an 18 year old student at the University of Virginia who alleged she was repeatedly raped and beaten for three hours on broken glass at a frat party. The article ignited controversy about rape on university campuses. It had special interest groups pounding their chests and ready to lynch men on university campuses. Shortly after a number of inaccuracies were revealed by the Washington Post in regards to the article and by other media outlets including the CBC.

It turns out the female reporter for the Jackie story never met with Jackie’s friends whom she alleges to have reported the incident. The reporter never spoke to the men involved. The photographs of her purported injuries referenced by the reporter were in fact fake. If that wasn’t enough, the fraternity stated that no such event occurred on the night in question. One of the alleged assailants was not a member of the fraternity.

On contacting one of the men in question he stated he had never met Jackie. Furthermore, some of Jackie’s friends have even cast doubt on her version of events.Rolling Stone issued an apology highlighting all the inaccuracies and justified it by suggesting that due to, “the sensitive nature of Jackie’s story, we decided to honour her request not to contact the man who she claimed orchestrated the attack on her nor any of the men who she claimed participated in the attack for fear of retaliation against her.”In other words, due diligence and due process was not followed due to the sensitivity of rape.

Even in their darkest hour of journalism the Managing Editor placed all the blame on the magazine, “these mistakes are on Rolling Stone, not on Jackie.”

Nonetheless, Jackie’s supporters were even more vociferous than ever with the hashtag
#istandwithjackie. Her supporters go so far as to suggest that even if she is lying we must still
believe her because rape is traumatic and fake rape cases are rare.

Furthermore, her supporters argue that Jackie should be forgiven for not being able to recall all
the details. That by casting any doubt on her version of events is victim shaming and the

underlying reason why victims of rape don’t come forward.