Rape kits and mobile phones

This seems fair enough:

Rape investigations are being systematically dropped after victims refuse to hand over their mobile phones for analysis, an investigation has found.

Would we accept a rape claim – of an immediately having occurred that is – if the victim refused to submit to a physical examination? You know, evidence being one of these things that matters?

38 thoughts on “Rape kits and mobile phones”

  1. From the article, a ‘victim’ speaks: ““I am willing to hand over the information that is relevant to what happened – I’m not willing to hand over seven years’ worth of information that is totally and utterly irrelevant.””

    Are you a police detective, love? Because if not, who are you to decide what’s relevant and what isn’t?

  2. “Are you a police detective, love? Because if not, who are you to decide what’s relevant and what isn’t?”

    I suspect there’s an element of the police making unreasonable demands in order to make people go away. Demanding 7 years of records seems excessive to me, if the alleged rape was by people unknown to the victim. Its not as if Plod don’t have form in the ‘Lets make our lives as easy as possible at the expense of justice’ stakes………

  3. @Jim

    Indeed this particular example was rape by strangers so the benefit of the phone records isn’t as obvious as if they’re investigating a relationship with a known contact.

    I wonder how easy it is for the police to extract only the more recent records from a phone in order to be more “proportional”? I presume the seven year figure is just because they were pulling everything from the phone they could extract, and in practice most of the older stuff wouldn’t get looked at anyway. Something that would be particularly distressing from a complainant’s point of view is if police are going to read through seven years of messages to various guys they were dating in order to figure out her sexual history and predilections for example. Really not the kind of thought most young women would be looking forward to.

  4. What are the chances of a conviction if the “victim” refuses to disclose evidence that *may* (as non-one except her knows whether or not it *is*) be relevant? Pretty small if the accused pleads “Not Guilty”.
    So what should the police do? Persecute 99 innocent men lest one guilty man go free.

  5. Did the police demand 7 years’ worth of records or was it the case that there happened to be 7 years’ worth of records on the phone she was asked to hand over?

  6. “john77

    So what should the police do? Persecute 99 innocent men lest one guilty man go free.”

    I’m sure the feminazis would say that there aren’t 99 innocent men.

  7. The main trick of the ex-CPS head Alison Saunders cow was withholding from the defence the phone records from the so-called victims. Records that showed them still sending intimate complements to their supposed “rapist” on subsequent sexual performances long after the date of the supposed life-ruining rape trauma.

    Perhaps this is why the females don’t want to hand their phones over?

  8. Ever since that poor blighter got his life turned inside out for a woman who texted her friends to say she was lying about rape, it’s an easy swing for reasonable doubt if the accuser refuses. Stranger or known to her. It’s a potential written record of what she thought. The offence of rape requires two mental states. The penis bearer must know that the penetration is unwanted. The penetrated must not want the penetration to happen or continue. Bothered must be proven beyond reasonable doubt. Lying about rape hurts innocent men and women.

  9. I’m sure the feminazis would say that there isn’t 1 innocent man.

    Fixed that for you @AndrewC.

    The main trick of the ex-CPS head Alison Saunders cow was withholding from the defence the phone records from the so-called victims. Records that showed them still sending intimate complements to their supposed “rapist” on subsequent sexual performances long after the date of the supposed life-ruining rape trauma. Perhaps this is why the females don’t want to hand their phones over?

    It’s not just that, lots of these girls are running around fucking all-and-sundry while keeping a couple of guys on the side, which is after all what Feminazism says they should be doing. Presumably they become a bit twitchy when knowing that the defence could (and probably would) bring these up in court to undermine her argument that post-coital regret amounts to rape.

    Doesn’t apply in “stranger rape”, but that is and always has been as rare as rocking horse shit.

    Yes. I know. I’m a misogynist with a penis the size of a tic tac.

  10. ‘dropped after victims refuse to hand over their mobile phones’

    Guardian still gets to call them ‘victims’ even though the cases are dropped.

  11. To paraphrase Cardinal Richelieu, if one would give me six years of smartphone data created by the most honest man, I would find something in them to have him hanged.

  12. The Meissen Bison

    MBE: Indeed this particular example was rape by strangers so the benefit of the phone records isn’t as obvious as if they’re investigating a relationship with a known contact.

    How can one know it was “rape by strangers”? The coition contrition that John Galt mentions is rather too frequently the basis for pursuing some hapless bloke though I agree that seven years seems excessive. But who keeps their phone for seven years, anyhow?

  13. @The Meissen Bison – Isn’t it mostly about SMS messages or other similar Internet data nowadays? Which is kept by the network operator 2 years under RIPA.

    As for the phones, sure they are consumables, but when you move from one android phone to a new one you certainly have the option to restore from your old phones backup (having done exactly this recently), so all of the stored history could in theory flow from phone, to phone, to phone as I’ve upgraded over the years.

    In which case, I might actually have more than 7 years worth of data, albeit some has been selectively purged over the years.

  14. @ TMBison
    But who keeps their phone for seven years, anyhow?
    I do. But then, as a white male octogenarian I’m not expecting to be raped…

  15. Which shows why you shouldn’t use account-based data storage systems. Not that you have a lot of choice with some things, like Whatsapp. But syncing your documents to a cloud without device-hosted encryption (all of the big boys), or using a big player for email, is foolish.

    If you make an allegation of a crime, you have some discretion in what evidence you provide to the police. It’s not likely they are going to get warrants and court orders to force you to disclose information if you are not co-operating in supporting the prosecution. Far easier to drop the prosecution which isn’t going to succeed if the victim is no longer supporting it. We also know the cops care about nothing but numbers. They want the data so they can find some stuff to take out of context to support the allegation, not so that they can provide evidence to the defence. Cf: the way all leftist propaganda works these days.

    If you are accused of a crime, you have rather less discretion in what evidence you provide, because given the right warrants it can be seized. And in backwards jurisdictions like the UK you can even be forced to hand over passwords and encryption keys.

    But, we also suspect that the cops just want as much data as they can get on anyone and everyone In our increasingly progressive society, yesterday’s victim is likely to become today’s suspect and tomorrow’s perpetrator. If you already have everything that person has ever said in your database, it’s so much easier to get people for things they said yesterday that become crimethink tomorrow.

    Set your phone to wipe its contents after a very small number of wrong password guesses, and encrypt any external storage you have added. _Pay_ for a mail server and cloud storage from a small, non-US-owned provider in a jurisdiction without RIPA-type powers, use end-to-end encryption as much as possible on the latter. Don’t use big tech synchronisation and cloud services. Use disposable email addresses that you never use for any other purpose when commenting on far-right blogs or far-left mainstream newspapers.

  16. So Much For Subtlety

    I would not be happy if the police trolled through seven years of my phone usage. But it would be better than going to prison for seven years.

    I think if I were raped, that would be worse than prison too. If letting the police read your tweets is so traumatic, perhaps the rape wasn’t, you know, I don’t know a polite way of putting this, not so bad? Not worth jailing someone for seven years?

  17. Erm, so what if they want the phone records and data?

    It sounds to me like they’re just doing a data dump from the phone onto a computer to go through the info later.
    They’re taking all of it because it’s easier and quicker to go Ctrl+A, Ctrl+C, Ctrl+V (or using a cloning program which will also take any deleted stuff as well) than to comb through it all and decide there and then what might be useful, running the risk of missing something (which may be deleted later).

    I imagine the main thing they’re looking for is location info from the phone to make sure that they were in the vicinity and that there aren’t any messages just before said event saying ‘Take me now’

    A good time to use the (awful) argument “If you have nothing to hide, you have nothing to fear.”

  18. When I read ‘Rape kit’ my first thought was ‘Rope, duct tape, plastic bags’. Am I a bad person?

  19. “…there aren’t any messages just before said event saying ‘Take me now’”

    But we know they aren’t looking for that kind of stuff. The cops want a collar. They want to collect evidence that supports the allegation and ignore, or as we know from recent cases, actively hide, evidence that undermines the allegation.

    Secondarily, they want evidence that supports getting further collars including for crimes they do not yet know about. Which a trawl of that data might turn up. It’s amazing what things are crimes these days.

    So I totally understand rape victims not wanting to volunteer to the cops their entire life history for the last however long.

  20. Just to clarify, I wouldn’t be happy if the police were going through my phone willy-nilly either.
    But if I had been through something traumatic (as they are saying rape is the most heinous of all possible acts is) I would want the highest chance of them being caught.
    Even with a stranger rape as discussed, the phone data is probably useful – location info for example as the phone pinged towers might give a decently narrow suspect pool.

  21. @Henning
    When I read ‘Rape kit’ my first thought was ‘Rope, duct tape, plastic bags’. Am I a bad person?

    No.
    A bad person would think ‘Duct tape, condoms, jelly tots’

  22. So Much For Subtlety

    Chernyy_Drakon June 18, 2020 at 11:38 am – “A bad person would think ‘Duct tape, condoms, jelly tots’”

    Whereas ‘duct tape, condoms and a squirrel suit’ is perfectly normal. In fact throw in the jelly tots and it is the start of a memorable weekend.

  23. The Meissen Bison

    Henning: When I read ‘Rape kit’ my first thought was ‘Rope, duct tape, plastic bags’.

    Ha! mine was “Amazon?”

  24. So Much For Subtlety

    Look on the bright side – at least it means that they don’t have all your phone messages down at GCHQ already.

    Hi Bob, if you’re reading this. How’s is it being back from Cyprus?

  25. I find it surprising that it is technically possible to obtain seven years’ data. I certainly never saw it in practice.

    The other thing is, another practical issue, that it if can be done, the scale of the data will be so vast in most cases that all police work (harassing motorists and people walking in the park, etc.) will grind to a halt. Also, for the most part, defence lawyers will not I think be paid for vetting the same material, so I suspect in reality large amounts of it simply will not be vetted.

    And I’ve just looked at the article and, Julia, I cannot see where you got your quote from …

  26. The Meissen Bison

    Look again, m’Lud, it’s at the end of the section headed ‘Case Study’ at foot of the article and just above the guardian’s appeal for money to continue providing a grateful world with progressive grievances.

  27. Edward Lud: “I’ve just looked at the article and, Julia, I cannot see where you got your quote from …”

    It’s the last sentence of the linked Guardian article, above the begging letter.

  28. @TMB

    ‘How can one know it was “rape by strangers”?’

    In this specific example, the article says so:

    ‘Olivia (not her real name) reported being drugged and attacked by strangers.’

    I don’t know if you’re making a more philosophical point about how can she know they were strangers if she was drugged or how can the police know she wasn’t fibbing about their strangerhood, but it would be a daft thing to be so insistent about if you were incorrect or lying – and if she was known to her assailants it would surely come out sooner or later, not sure what good trawling through seven years of records would do and there would clearly be significant potential for harm.

  29. The Meissen Bison

    @MBE – I’m flattered that you think I might have found a profound philosophical point! It was simply that this was Olivia’s contention and there might have been other information she would have given that allowed the strangers to be identified by the police while keeping up the fiction of their being unknown to her.

  30. Messrs. B and Vara, thanks. Oddly, I am fairly sure that was not there when I looked. Whether that’s because I did not use the link, but went straight to the Groan homepage, I do not know …

  31. It’s certainly possible to seven years or more information from mobile phones. I get IMs going back to the earliest days of messaging apps for translation in litigation. Some people never clear their conversations or delete their photos, and a lot of people write things casually that they would be better off not writing.

  32. The Meissen Bison

    @Widmerpool – How does a dance to the music of time work with two metre social distancing? Asking for an Austrian Gräfin with hot withers.

  33. Were I (male) accused of rape, my home would be “visited” by the Police. All and any data storage or internet-connected devices would be seized for examination – including SIM cards, sd cards, thumb drives and most certainly any mobile phones which might be “mine”. The contents would be examined for activity and data which might tend to support – or contradict – the accusation.

    While this is going on, my identity would almost inevitably have become known to the local community at least and very probably also to my employer, jeopardising my continuing employment and promotion prospects because of the possibility of “bringing the employer into disrepute” allied with “no smoke without fire”. My family relationships and friendships would be prejudiced.

    A Chief Superintendent friend has told me that around 20% of all rape accusations are made by friends of the alleged victim (AV), on their behalf. The AV wakes up after a night on the tiles with some random bloke in her bed and she can’t remember a thing; friend steps in and accuses rape. AV mobile phone and other data sources frequently uncover a history of sexting / explicit video or photographic material sent between the AV and the accused and others, as well as evidence of long and abusive relationships. I don’t mean that all accusations are trumped up. But some absolutely are.

    The CS in question is a sane, highly intelligent, competent and personable individual whom I respect immensely. So if I trust what they tell me, and if my life can in principle be trashed immediately by a mere accusation from someone I’ve never heard of, then in principle AVs can bloody well hand over their mobile phones. They can’t run with the hare *and* with the hounds.

    Oh shit. There’s another crime……

  34. 7 years of data?

    Just got a new phone this week, transferring data from old phone. Probably in excess of 8 years worth of stuff.

    Technically cloning a phone onto a system in order to be searched / printed etc – not sure how CPS or police would be able to get away with transferring just the last 3 months or whatever period.
    And stranger rape – while it happens – may well in reality have something on the phone.

    Same social circle, same locations that drinking / drugs takes place, same workplace etc.
    Not always a stranger – some guys fixate on a girl they see. She may not know him, he may know quite a bit about her…
    But without looking at her phone its impossible to prove what he says she knows.

  35. If you make an accusation of rape, can the cops demand to see your tax returns? For how many years?

    If the cops want to examine a phone, they need to get a damn warrant. Go to court and present to the judge what they are looking for and why. See if the judge will back your fishing expedition.

    Making an accusation of criminal action does not erase your rights.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *