Being accused of a sex crime can ruin your life. Even if you are able to clear your name and get the charges dropped, your reputation may be ruined. Friends and family members may start to distance themselves from you and some may even sever all connections with you. You may lose your job while you try to prove your innocence and have trouble finding a new one while you are still a suspect. With the horrible stigma attached to sex crimes, weak accusations may cause more problems than if you were charged with any other crime.
A former Silver Spring man is learning just how damaging those accusations can be after he has been charged with rapes he allegedly committed over 30 years ago. The 48-year-old man had been living outside of Maryland, but Montgomery County prosecutors have decided to reinstate the 34-year-old charges. The man has been charged with three counts of first-degree rape, three counts of second-degree rape, nine counts of first-degree sexual offense, six counts of second-degree sexual offense, two counts of third-degree sexual offense and one count of child abuse.
Although prosecutors chose to reinstate charges against a man who supposedly raped two sisters when he was 14-years-old, the police officers investigating the case have freely admitted that there is little physical evidence that links him to the case. The detective in charge of the case has said that she expects the case to be extremely difficult.
According to police, the man had sex with his former neighbors. They believe that he was between 14 and 17 years old at the time of the alleged assaults and he sisters would have been 4 and 6 years old. With little to no physical evidence, it seems that the basis of the prosecutors' case is two former children's memories and recollections of an even that happened 34 years ago. In fact, the sisters first made their accusations in 2009 after one of their therapists encouraged one of them to step forward, calling into question the sisters' credibility.
Source: Gazette.Net, "Rape charges reinstated against man who was extradited from Florida," Jeremy Arias, Sept. 14, 2011