"What does a woman have to do to prove she was raped?"
Hello I'm Lydia Cuomo,I had been raped and now it felt like I was being traumatized all over again. This time it was in a courtroom, my family and friends were there, my rapist and his attorney, and the public.
He had already confessed. My family were in front row seats for the detailed account of how their little girl, a school teacher, walking on her way to work, dragged by a New York City police officer into an alley at gunpoint, and forced into oral, anal and vaginal sex.
The rape was brutal, reliving it in public and in front of my family and rapist...indescribable. Now, at the end of that long trial and sitting feet from my rapist and in front of my family, I found out that my jury was going to hang. Guilty verdict on two counts of criminal sexual acts, for the oral and anal assaults, but they hung, and I would have a mistrial on the rape charges.
Mistrial? How can that be? He confessed!
It's then explained, rather matter of factly, that New York state law requires vagnial penetration in order to call it rape, and since vaginal penetration could not be proven, I was told my rape was only a sexual assault.
To call what happened 'sexual assault' is a crime itself. Right is right, he raped me at the end of the day, and he's not being called a rapist. He is a rapist, and now New York need to call a rape a rape because it doesn't matter whether or not is is oral, anal, or vaginal, they are all a gross and violent violation when you are the one being raped.
Trust me, there's nothing sexual about it — it was detestable, a disgusting violation. I was raped. Raped, like thousands of others are every year in New York, many men too, only some, like me, don't get to call it rape, and that's just wrong.Someone please tell me what a woman has to do to prove she was raped?
New York, with your help, I'm convinced we can change these arcane laws that do more to protect rapists than their victims. If you believe that rape should be called rape, please share the petition so we can get this law passed and protect other women and men from brutal assaults like this.
PS. Thank you for sharing this with your friends so they have the opportunity to support this too. All of us working together can #stopabuse!
With thanks to KENNETH LOVETT and the NEW YORK DAILY NEWS for their reporting. You can read more of my story here: http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/survivor-expand-ny-rape-statutes-article-1.1260437#ixzz2KbzqbP7d