LaToya Bell, 22 speaking about the gang rape of an 11-year old by up to 20 men and boys.
I have mentioned a case out of Milwaukee several times on this blog. It is the case of an 11 year old girl being sexually assaulted by up to 19 men and boys ranging in age from 13 to 40 in the presence of a 16 year old girl and an adult woman.
Well the final defendant has been sentenced in this case. A teen who was 14 at the time received 5 years. The sentences of those convicted range from 3 years in juvie to 25 years for the 40 year old man who said that an 11 year old girl “looked grown.”
Seventeen-year-old Terrell Jefferson was the 14th person punished for his role in the Labor Day 2006 assault. Authorities said as many as 20 men and boys engaged in sex acts with the girl over several hours. A 16-year-old girl was accused of helping get the younger girl to take part.MSNBC.com
The prosecutor in this case was horrified to hear from the families of perpetrators that this, the gang rape of underage girls, is a common occurrence in the neighborhood.
Matthew Torbenson, an assistant district attorney who prosecuted the juveniles, said he hoped it was a one-time aberration."The really scary thing is, during court proceedings I heard members of the perpetrators' families saying this kind of behavior is not uncommon," Torbenson said.
Well I used to be outraged and think that some of the vile inhumane things I have covered on this blog were aberrations too. I thought that there were more good decent honorable people on the planet than bad and that crimes such as this were the result of a few bad apples. I was wrong. I suggest this prosecutor read “Getting Played” by Jody Miller.
This isn't uncommon at all and horrors like this aren't the result of a few bad demonic individuals. Its structural and as in Jody miller's book, Black women play a major role in maintaining that structure.
A number of women in the girl's neighborhood said the males involved were good people who made bad decisions."Five years? Ten years? That's ridiculous," said LaToya Bell, 22, sitting on a porch with four others who nodded in agreement. "They (are) getting time for nothing. That girl, she knew what she was doing."
Perpetuating the belief that an eleven year old child is wholly and completely responsible for navigating the perils and predators she encounters from fully grown men and women. If you read Miller's book the statements of the 22 year old woman aren't shocking at all
The more rocks I turn over, the more creepy crawlies come slithering out. I don't know which is better, blissful ignorance or the burning light of truth. If we were just dealing with bad apples, we could build bigger jails, but how do you put an entire community in the slammer? How do you incarcerate structural inequalities which encourage, promote, and reward demonstrations of “masculinity” involving brutalizing young Black girls as a matter of course?
I have no solutions to offer you today. I've got nothing for you. Nothing.