The mother of a girl who was allegedly sexually assaulted at the Martin De Porres Academy in New York says that police walked away from the investigation because her daughter and her attackers all have “low IQs.”
Two mentally challenged boys forced her to perform oral sex, then tried to have anal sex with her. All the while, a third assailant “banged her on the head” in an effort to keep her pinned down, the News reported. When the school’s social worker informed the girl’s mother of what happened, she went to a hospital and got the police involved.
A detective wrote just two days later that “school administration request [sic] no further police action and will handle additional behavioral and social issues with training and additional counseling.” It took four months before the girl’s mother was informed that the case had been closed.
She responded by filing a lawsuit on Jan. 10, according to the report. A Nassau County Police Department spokesperson told the News that the attack “was more of a consensual situation with their mental capabilities,” and therefore not investigated as sexual assault.
The teacher who was in the classroom at the time the attack began has since been fired, the school’s website claims.
New York state law stipulates that it is a felony crime (PDF) to have sex with any person incapable of consent, defined as the mentally disabled and incapacitated.
It is not clear whether the girl is legally “disabled,” but attorney Madeline Lee Bryer told the News that she “did not have the capacity” to consent. Additionally, the age of consent in New York state is 17 years old, but the victim in this case was 15 and has an IQ of about 50, making her mental age just over 7.
Stephen C. Webster is the senior editor of Raw Story, and is based out of Austin, Texas. He previously worked as the associate editor of The Lone Star Iconoclast in Crawford, Texas, where he covered state politics and the peace movement’s resurgence at the start of the Iraq war. Webster has also contributed to publications such as True/Slant, Austin Monthly, The Dallas Business Journal, The Dallas Morning News, Fort Worth Weekly, The News Connection and others. Follow him on Twitter at @StephenCWebster.
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