Rape victim says Jehovah’s Witness church leaders made her listen back to attack

A woman raped aged 14 claims a church forced her to listen to a recording of the attack for at least four hours.

The Jehovah’s Witness church in Roy and the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society had successfully argued in lower courts that it is not liable for the incident.

The disturbing case involving a woman, now 20, from Salt Lake City, US has been taken to the Utah Supreme Court.

Deseret News reports that the victim alleges the male leaders of a Jehovah’s Witness church forced her to listen to a recorded tape in 2008 of her being raped as a 14-year-old.

Lower courts previously ruled that under the First Amendment, the church was not liable for the incident which the victim’s lawyers disputed.

  • Mum 'gobsmacked' to receive court summons after paying council tax a day early

The victim said she was crying and shaking while pleading for the defendants to stop the recording of the sick assault from an 18-year-old male member of the church, she claims.

Utah Supreme Court heard how her attacker raped her on multiple occasions as part of an ongoing bullying campaign involving further and sexual harassment.

An attorney for the defence, Kara Porter, said the tribunal attempted to determine if the victim had “sinned” and engaged in voluntary sex with the 18-year-old.

Porter added that the government has no place to interfere in church matters.

The victim’s attorney outlined the devastating lasting effects of the rape and harrowing experience of listening to it back for hours on end.

They said that following the alleged rape, the girl had nightmares, anxiety, low performance in school, and emotional issues.

KSL reports that the victim was made to listen to the tape for at least four hours, according to her lawyers.

The state’s high court is yet to make a ruling but a few of the justices expressed their opinions toward the end of the hearing.

Justice Deno Himonas said: "The allegation here is a mental and emotional equivalent of waterboarding. I’ve been a judge for a long time and a lawyer for a long time. I’ve never seen, in court, anything like this that’s alleged,”

“It’s an important and difficult case,” Chief Justice Matthew Durrant added.

Source: Read Full Article