Botched police work makes me remember how police failed me
Start writing a post

On the second of December, CNN ran a story talking about the destruction of unprocessed rape kits in 14 states. This conduct was discovered because a victim in one of the states where this was occurring went to be updated on progress and found out her case was thrown out.

The first thought I had was to check and see if my state of Ohio participated in those activities. Even though it's been almost 30 years for my assaults, and I was never taken to the police when they happened to me, I was glad that Ohio detectives didn't destroy untested evidence. I feel like they were negligent and unaware, but at least they weren't criminals themselves.

Whenever I have to go to update my child abuse and prevention in-service hours for my job, it is a heart-wrenching and triggering experience.

Watching video reenactments of abuse plus reading about cases of true stories of abuse makes me just want to jump out my own skin. Or become a social worker so I can find these kids and save them. I never leave one of those trainings without crying my eyes out at least twice from sorrow and jealousy.

On one hand, it's wonderful to see the progress that's been made towards supporting children who have been through sexual, physical, psychological, and/or neglect abuse. On the other hand, I can't help but wonder where all this was when I was growing up.

Why were police okay with just picking me up all hours of the evening after school on the streets just to take me to my babysitter's house or back home? Yes, I was a latchkey kid, but obviously something else was going on at home. My elementary school even arranged the school bus to drop me off on my babysitter's street to make sure I went there after school.

Why did nobody think they should investigate my home life more? I think for the longest time people just wrote me off as scatterbrained and stupid and just chalked up my behaviors to symptoms of that. I didn't feel cared for by authorities, my school, or the police.

I remember vividly telling teachers and friends about my sexual assaults but no one did anything or said anything about it. It got so bad that I became aware when people would outright shame me for putting myself in those situations and that I was probably remembering things wrong since I was so young when they happened. So eventually I just kept my mouth shut.

In fact, until writing for Odyssey, I've never talked about my assaults again. Not even to the dozens of child psychologists I had been going to since I became of age.

Now, hotlines and police stations and even hospitals have direct access to Children and Family Services. Daycare centers take children to 12 years of age, libraries offer homework centers, Afterschool programs are open to six at night, recreational centers are open till late in the evenings — all to prevent delinquency and latchkey kids. It feels like the world changed almost overnight from uncaring to overbearing. Films like “Antwone Fisher" and “Precious" accurately depicted a lot of my life growing up.

After researching the statute of limitations for rape cases here in Ohio, I wondered how my life would have changed if I had done a rape kit for my two assaults. Would the police have looked into the rest of my home life after the examination? Would I have been happy that the perpetrators had been put away — taken from their parents and loved ones? Could I have felt good about myself being the cause of a father being taken away from his two kids and a girlfriend that needed him?

I at least wish I could've done something to stop the upstairs man from hurting others. Who knows how many other victims of his are out there now because I didn't know how to get justice for myself. Was I his first victim? I'll never know.

It's sad that those whose rape kits were destroyed by the police departments in those states will never get justice. At least they went and got the rape kits done. They tried to bring their perpetrators down.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

I'll never forget the day that someone told me these words: "Madison, I think you're a good friend to everyone but yourself." I stood there completely in awe of that statement. Before that day, I never really thought about being a friend to myself, and at the time, I didn't really know what it meant. Now, I realize that you can't fully be there for other people unless you're there for yourself, too. You can't show up for others until you're willing to show up for yourself.

Here are five things everyone should learn in order to be a better friend to themselves. These steps are hard, but they're so worth it.

Keep Reading... Show less

It's no secret that social media can be harmful to our mental health. The barrage of heavily edited photos of Instagram models that we see every day only fuels our insecurities. There is a good side to social media, though. It allows us to keep up with friends and family across the globe. Plus, it provides a platform for mental health experts. Listed below are five therapists on Instagram who will fill your feed with motivational quotes and positive infographics.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

In Honor of PCOS Awareness Month, I Researched 25 Things About The Autoimmune Disease

Ongoing research is further promoting the fact that engaging in a proper diet and exercise regimen can alleviate many symptoms!

191

Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) is a common endocrine disorder that affects young women, especially those of reproductive age. Women with PCOS often exhibit symptoms ranging from increased levels of the male hormone androgen along with cysts in their ovaries. However, ongoing research is further promoting the fact that engaging in a proper diet and exercise regimen can alleviate many symptoms! Here are 25 things I found out about PCOS.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

To The Boy Who Said I Was 'Unlovable' Because Of My Back Rolls, My Body Is NOT A Problem

I realized I need to stop blaming myself for staying single. The problem wasn't me. It was you.

4
Photo by Artem Kovalev on Unsplash

I told you I was going to be okay if you said what was on your mind, but honestly, nothing could've prepared me for the words that came out of your mouth. After getting off of the phone with you, I burst into tears. Those words shattered my heart and continuously repeated in my head.

Keep Reading... Show less

Whether the stress of adjusting to online school or losing a job is getting you down, we all know that the effects of this pandemic have been nothing but stressful. While everyone is focusing on not getting sick, finding a job, and keeping up with school, no one has really found time to decompress. High levels of continued stress can not only lead to physical health issues but mental health issues as well. To make it a little easier, here are some ways you can de-stress during a time like this while staying safe and socially distanced.

Keep Reading... Show less

Ready or not, here come the holidays, friends, and if you're as obsessed with the spirit of the season as I am, you are much more ready than not. Thanks to Hallmark Channel's Monopoly game making it possible to celebrate all year long, you can be ready now, too!

Keep Reading... Show less
Stephanie Tango

The pandemic has been in our world for more than half of 2020 and people are still acting stupid. If anything, they're getting stupider. They think that the virus is gone. It's not. Stop going to frat parties. Stop trying to go places without a mask. I wish things were normal, too. They're not.

Keep Reading... Show less
Kai Parlett

In the summer of 2017, 20 type 1 diabetics completed a 10-week 4,000+ mile bike ride from New York to California. They biked against the advice of doctors, family, and friends. Many were skeptical that people with diabetes could complete such a physically challenging trip without putting themselves in danger due to their disease.

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments