Why Won’t the Police Prosecute the Attacker in My Sexual Assault or Rape Case

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In this video, Jeb Butler talks about Prosecuting Sexual Assault or Rape Cases.

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► Why won the police prosecute the attacker in my sexual assault or rape case? Well, I don’t know. You’re dealing with the government and either the police or a prosecutor, or perhaps both, and whether they bring a criminal case against the attacker is unfortunately up to them. We sometimes have clients who are survivors and say, “Can you please make the police do something?” The answer is, unfortunately no. They don’t listen to me any better than they listen to you. Or “Can I sue the police for not doing anything, or can I sue the prosecutor for not doing anything?” Unfortunately, no. They have immunity for which cases they choose to prosecute and which they don’t.
► So why aren’t they prosecuting your case? I don’t know. But it doesn’t mean you can’t bring a civil case. A civil case, unlike a criminal case, is one brought by an individual, usually with the help of a law firm like ours. And you can do that even if there is no criminal case. And that makes some sense because the standards of proof are different. In a criminal case, in order to win, the prosecutor, almost always with the help of the police, has to prove the case beyond a reasonable doubt. In a civil case, the standard is different. We have to prove the case to a preponderance of the evidence, which just means, as judges have been telling juries for centuries, the greater weight of the evidence. So sometimes we can bring a civil case even if there is no criminal case.

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