You might have heard about this story before as it was quite heavily publicized. However, last summer, off duty NYPD officer Michael Pena, drunk late at night, grabbed a woman off the street, pulled her behind a building, and raped her at gunpoint.
Initially, his legal team’s defence was:
“whatever happened, there was certainly no intent on the part of Michael Pena to hurt anybody.”
Now that Pena’s trial has begun, his lawyer has presented a different defence. He confirms that Pena did all the grabbing and touching – but that doesn’t mean he raped her:
“This was a terrible crime, an unforgivable crime, but it does not rise to the level of the charges,” defense attorney Ephraim Savitt said.
Savitt claimed the cop didn’t penetrate the alleged victim, suggesting he should be spared a life sentence for rape. It was an attempted rape, he said.
Oh! He just attempted to rape that helpless woman — despite the fact that there is semen evidence and witnesses who say otherwise.
The fact that attempted rape is different from rape is maddening. Whether there was penetration or not – it is still rape.