Should there be legal consequences for false rape accusations?

Rape never has been or will be a light topic to touch on. It’s scary, ugly and infuriating to discuss. We all know the statistics of how sexual assault happens or where it takes place—I don’t have to go into that.

I’m not going to drag on about how when someone is charged of rape their sentence is not nearly where it should be or sometimes the accuser gets out early because of good behavior. What we do need talk about is false rape accusations and ask ourselves what should happen to the accuser.

Rape is a severe crime, and I believe that the accuser should serve jail time. Filing an assault and accusing an innocent person of something they didn’t commit should be considered a felony.

Let’s think about the Emmett Till case, a young black boy who was beaten to death when a white woman lied on the stand about how he had flirted with her and made her uncomfortable. Years later, when she admitted to lying, she received no punished, but Emmett Till had paid the price for her lie.

We have a long way to go to get to a fair justice system. We can at least start with convicting a false accuser the same sentence as the crime they say happened.

For example, a year ago a woman made up a story about a false rape claim that led two college football players in Connecticut to withdraw from the team and their college. Why did she lie? She didn’t want to lose a potential boyfriend.

She decided to lie and almost ruin the lives of two innocent people all because she never wanted to admit that she was in the wrong. She was charged to one year in prison, but she should have received more.

It should be remembered that a false accuser is a person making up a story to serve some goal. Whether or not the accuser is a woman or a man, if they get caught lying on the stand, they need to be punished. By lying about something as serious as assault, they take away the rights and liberties of the accused.

And for what? What reward could someone achieve by lying and wasting everyone’s time? Probably for attention or so that the accuser wouldn’t get into trouble with someone else, but those reasons are invalid, inexcusable and irrelevant.

So, should there be legal consequences for false rape accusations? The answer is yes. This isn’t just about a fair justice system—this is about equality.

Trinity Velazquez

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