sexual assault and the known assailant

Discussion in 'General Martial Arts Talk' started by hoshin1600, Jan 25, 2018.

  1. AngryHobbit

    AngryHobbit Senior Master

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    That's a great point, and links to a certain degree with @Danny T 's list above. It's not just what kind of assault, what's involved, etc. It's also who and where.

    Sadly, having the basis for comparison, I can tell you the two assaults I had from total strangers scarred me far less than the period of molestation by a family member, which continued for several years.

    I had no qualms about fighting back violently against the drunk strangers. I was resistant but very reluctant to be violent against the family member - someone I grew up with, loved, and trusted.

    Not telling anyone about the assaults by strangers was easy. They were over. I didn't get raped. No need to worry the rest of the family. I know it sounds perverse, since I made these decision as a child of 10 and 13, but this was a very common mindset among us, Soviet kids - life was so profoundly horrid at times, upsetting your parents with something that happened to you was just not done.

    Not telling anyone about the molestation by family member was harder. It was someone we all interacted with constantly. And any word from me would have caused my parents and grandparents a lot of grief. I just couldn't do it.

    So.. I think, in addition to physical self-defense training, regardless of gender, there needs to be a psychological aspect. Assault is NEVER ok. By anyone. Toward anyone else, especially a child, or someone weaker. Period. Yes, speaking up is hard and terrifying - especially with so much stigma still associated with this. But speak up we must. Otherwise, nothing will ever change.
     
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  2. JowGaWolf

    JowGaWolf Grandmaster

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    I'm with you on this one. I want to be able to use every tool and resource that I have available to protect myself. I don't want to be in a situation where I'm forced to use Martial Arts. I like fighting competitively and sparring, but I don't like the violence of a street attack and I would rather avoid that as soon as possible. If Farting was an effective self-defense measure then I would be sure to have gas often. lol.

    I tell students the truth all the time. There's no way to 100% protect yourself and that's with or without a gun. If someone wants to get you (kill you) then they will. I let them know that the purpose of self-defense is to reduce the chances that harm will come to us and to increase our chances of getting out of harm once we discover we are in it. The better we are at doing those 2 things the less likely we'll be a victim.

    I always want my students to understand the reality of personal safety and that there are things we can control and things we can't, and for the stuff that falls in between we are given a chance to come out on the better end of a situation based on what know and our abilities. That's pretty much what life is general so this makes sense to them. Sometimes you win and and some times you are screwed.
     
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  3. Midnight-shadow

    Midnight-shadow 3rd Black Belt

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    I doubt I would get into trouble for asking a child where they got their injuries from. And if a child did confide in me about abuse they have suffered, I would immediately report it to my centre manager who would inform the police and social services. If for some reason the parents were involved in the abuse directly and got aggressive, my employer would back me up. That's one of the good things about working for a private leisure company as opposed to operating on my own. That said, even if I were to operate on my own, the association that gave me my swim teaching qualification (Swim England) have an abuse helpline that I can call if I suspect one of my students has been abused. Unfortunately, as far as I know there isn't anything like that in place for Martial Arts schools.
     
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  4. oftheherd1

    oftheherd1 Senior Master

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    It is already posted there.
     
  5. oftheherd1

    oftheherd1 Senior Master

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    I may not have worded that well, as perhaps you; not a friendly cop but protective service or police? :p But I think we both have the same thing in mind, notify someone who should do something.
     
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  6. oftheherd1

    oftheherd1 Senior Master

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    Glad to hear it.
     
  7. oftheherd1

    oftheherd1 Senior Master

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    Suggest? The best thing I can think of is to convince those instructors to bring in a social services professional who specializes in sexual assault. They should have training and experience to help with all types of assault, from resisting known-to-the-victim friends or family, to forceful rape by strangers, and most healthful reactions for survival by the victims. That latter is very important.
     
  8. AngryHobbit

    AngryHobbit Senior Master

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    Report to police or social worker or both. It's sad we have to consider such things but yeah... My sister-in-law works for the Guardian Litem program - this is her life basically: witnessing such cases day in and day out.
     
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  9. CB Jones

    CB Jones Senior Master

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    One of the problems is the idea that people need proof before reporting it.

    If you have reasonable suspicion report it and let the professionals worry about proving it.

    It always aggravated me to hear a witness state that they had their suspicions for a long time but never had proof.
     
  10. JR 137

    JR 137 Senior Master

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    I agree with what you’re saying, but you have to look at “proof” as something different than literal proof such as directly witnessing it, being directly told, seeing direct physical signs, etc.

    Reporting someone for an allegation as serious as this requires signs that go a good deal beyond a “hunch.” An unjustified or incorrect accusation can be severely damaging to all parties involved, alleged offender and victim. Children can be needlessly taken away from their family, the accused could face severe mental and physical consequences from everyone around them - their work, family, friends, etc. Once someone is accused, they’re basically guilty until proven so in everyone’s eyes, and they’ll always be. Sometimes even after the “victim” states clearly that it isn’t true. Think about how many times it seems like the victim dropped the accusation because they didn’t want to feel like they were going through the process again.

    A lot of people have the feeling that if you’re going to destroy someone’s reputation for life and put a potential victim through all of this, you need a lot more than just a feeling of “something’s not right.”

    Note that I didn’t say people should nor shouldn’t be conservative with accusations. I’m just stating what I’m pretty sure most people feel if they’re faced with the choice of reporting. There’s really no good answer. People don’t want to be the one who inaccurately reported something that’s got such grave consequences for a lot of people if they’re unsure. Yes, it’s best left to the experts to make sense of it, but once the experts are involved there’s no turning back. No amount of apologies will make up for a wrongful accusation.
     
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  11. gpseymour

    gpseymour Sr. Grandmaster

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    Nobody wants to be the one falsely accusing someone of abuse. And nobody wants to be the one who didn't report abuse that happened, when they had a chance. Unfortunately, there's a pretty big overlap between those two positions, rather than a nice clean line between that shows where we should always report and where we should never accuse.
     
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  12. oftheherd1

    oftheherd1 Senior Master

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    While I agree in general, define 'reasonable suspicion' in light of posts #30 and #31 below your post I quoted above.

    The damage of reporting a suspicion that turns out not to be true, or not reporting a suspicion that turns out to be true, is severe for all involved.

    My personal belief is that if one is going to err, it is best to err on the side of reporting. But it shouldn't be done on a whim nor for sketchy reasons. Now define sketchy reasons. :oops: :(
     
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  13. oftheherd1

    oftheherd1 Senior Master

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    Not to rag on you, so don't take it personally. I think it is one of those things like our comments above, about choice of words. But I learned to disapprove of the thought process behind that. Is a policeman's job to consider all allegations as true and therefore go to great lengths to 'prove' the allegation, or to look for all facts, and let the chips fall where they may?

    I understand that police have a tendency to become prosecution oriented. It is an understandable hazard of the job. But I think the thought process must be kept correctly on the side of fact finding, not guilt finding.
     
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  14. CB Jones

    CB Jones Senior Master

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    This is the problem. You are assuming that you are the accuser.

    Instead, look at it as you are a concerned party just reporting your observations. It is the investigator who will take on the role as the accuser if there is evidence of wrongdoing, not you. The initial investigation of a complaint is typically very confidential and private.....if there is no fire then it is just documented and there is no harm.

    Its the fear by third parties of being incorrect that allows many of these abusers to operate for years, even decades.

    Instead, trust the authorities to determine what what merits a full investigation and what does not.
     
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  15. CB Jones

    CB Jones Senior Master

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    As an investigator my job is to investigate and enforce the law...part of the investigation is analyzing information and facts and determining whether or not someone committed a crime. And once I make that determination I am required to affirm under oath to a judge that the person committed a crime, specifically how the person committed the crime and provide proof (probable cause) to the judge to support my claim.

    So the investigation begins as "fact finding" but once the determination that someone has committed the crime has been made....I have to become prosecution oriented because as the case agent and affiant of the charges I am part of the prosecution.
     
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  16. JR 137

    JR 137 Senior Master

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    I wish I could agree AND disagree at the same time. I agree with what you’ve said, but I disagree because I don’t think it’s that simple. Or so I believe, as I’ve never been in a situation where I’ve had reason to believe someone was being sexually abused. Physically abused, yes. And I’ve had no problem reporting that. I haven’t come across suspected sexual abuse yet, so maybe I’m making more of an issue of it that it actually is. Hopefully I’ll never have to find out.
     
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  17. oftheherd1

    oftheherd1 Senior Master

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    The bolded is a good point, but a bit cloudy in the common vernacular. But yes, if you observe, or hear about something that bothers you, simply become a reporter of facts. "I saw this, I heard that, and it bothered me. I thought I should report it." If the official you report it to has questions, answer the questions without any embellishment and walk away.

    You are not legally an accuser. 'Just the facts ma'am, just the facts.'
     
  18. oftheherd1

    oftheherd1 Senior Master

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    Good enough. The jurisdiction I worked in we did not have to affirm under oath, our belief that facts supported a particular person committed a particular crime. I was in the military. We might receive a report from someone, or develop information on our own. We would investigate and document facts as we found them. If they supported the commission of a crime, we would write our report and say so.

    If we could document a crime under our jurisdiction, and who committed it, we would put that person in what we called the title block. If we could document a crime, and the facts did not identify a person, we would shown the subject as unknown. If the facts did not support the commission of a crime we would say so and close the investigation. We always discussed the investigation with the local SJA and followed their advice on what our investigation had proven, not proven, or disproven. Much as we might know, they were still the 'experts' on law.

    As an aside, it was normal for a suspect's military commander at the company and battalion level to receive a copy of our report. They would be the ones to decide if and what action should be taken. The could select non-judicial punishment at the company or battalion level (once an action that did not follow the person once they left the unit.) or refer the person for a court-martial. If referred to a court-martial, usually the SJA would get involved.

    Normally, an Art 32 hearing (something like a grand jury hearing) would be convened. They would check facts as well, and interview witnesses, then make a recommendation for or against a court-martial. FIW, a higher commander could disagree with non-judicial punishment, set it aside, and file for a court-martial. Not a common occurrence, but I have seen it happen.

    Hope the above isn't too much information. :eek: :p

    Nothing wrong with either your or the military's method. The same things are accomplished.
     
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  19. Tez3

    Tez3 Sr. Grandmaster

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    There is. All the martial arts associations have policies for dealing with situations like this, nearly all martial arts clubs belong to one of these because they are the ones that provide insurance and often confirmations of rankings etc.

    Safeguarding in martial arts | CPSU
    https://bccma.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/06/BCCMA-Child-Protection-Policy-March-2015.pdf
    http://kokuryumartialarts.co.uk/mabr/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/cpp2016.pdf

    These have just been taken at random from a very large list of organisations.


    Most have these policies in place, I know because I've read most of them as it's one of the other things we check when we are looking for cheaper or better insurance every year.

    In the UK if you have doubts about the safety of a child you can phone the NSPCC who will help. They also run safeguarding courses. Report abuse
     
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  20. gpseymour

    gpseymour Sr. Grandmaster

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    That's interesting. There's not an analog to that structure in the US. I don't have to belong to an association (and don't) to get insurance.
     

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