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Old 5th February 2020, 05:20 PM   #1
Graham2001
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DA Says Couple Accused of Drugging and Raping Up to 1,000 Women Did No Such Thing—Ex-

I'm not sure if this belongs in 'Trials and Errors' or here but this is scary (either way.)



Quote:
A California prosecutor is dropping all charges against a doctor and his girlfriend, alleging that his predecessor “manufactured” allegations that the couple drugged and sexually assaulted up to 1,000 women.

https://www.msn.com/en-au/news/world...-up/ar-BBZHmux
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Old 5th February 2020, 05:24 PM   #2
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Was the predecessor charged?
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Old 5th February 2020, 05:36 PM   #3
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Manufacturing rape allegations must be like opening a biscuit tin. You only plan on doing a couple but when you look down you've done five hundred and there doesn't seem much point in stopping there...
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Old 5th February 2020, 05:39 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Graham2001 View Post
I'm not sure if this belongs in 'Trials and Errors' or here but this is scary (either way.)






https://www.msn.com/en-au/news/world...-up/ar-BBZHmux
Interesting, but I would like to hear more details. "Up to 1,000 women" had already seemed to me to be hyperbole and led to many questions. Hard to imagine what this couple had to endure before the truth was out.
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Old 5th February 2020, 06:07 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Skeptical Greg View Post
Was the predecessor charged?
My question too.

If true, then the former DA has some explaining to do.
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Old 5th February 2020, 06:21 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Puppycow View Post
My question too.

If true, then the former DA has some explaining to do.
He was voted out of office. Justice has been served.
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Old 5th February 2020, 06:30 PM   #7
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Another prosecutor who wants immunity for his own misconduct:

https://twitter.com/matthewferner/st...89599162089474
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Old 5th February 2020, 06:34 PM   #8
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Read to the end of the article though:
Quote:
At least some of the women who accused Robicheaux and Riley maintain they were assaulted.

Michael Fell, an attorney for one of them, told the Los Angeles Times the decision is a betrayal of his client.

“For somebody to report, for them to go through what she had to go through with the police, for the district attorney’s office to file criminal charges, for her to have to be patient the last two years while the case is being prosecuted, only for it to be dropped—she’s going to be devastated,” Fell said.
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Old 5th February 2020, 08:08 PM   #9
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I wonder if the new DA has anything to say regarding the women who still maintain they were assaulted.
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Old 5th February 2020, 08:15 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Checkmite View Post
I wonder if the new DA has anything to say regarding the women who still maintain they were assaulted.
Where are the others (the 1000 minus -"the women who still maintain they were assaulted") and why haven't they come forward?

Have the police examined or investigated any link between the predecessor and the "the women who still maintain they were assaulted"?


Cases like these are never as straightforward as they appear.
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Old 5th February 2020, 08:51 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by smartcooky View Post
Where are the others (the 1000 minus -"the women who still maintain they were assaulted") and why haven't they come forward?

Have the police examined or investigated any link between the predecessor and the "the women who still maintain they were assaulted"?


Cases like these are never as straightforward as they appear.
The statement about this being a case involving "1000 victims" seems to itself be overblown; it appears to reference a statement by the earlier DA about finding as many photos and videos and suggesting that they could depict more victims in response to press questions along those lines.

The actual charges the doctor and his partner faced seemed to only involve two victims:

Quote:
Fast-forward four years, and California authorities say he and his current girlfriend used their good looks and charm to drug and rape at least two women.

Robicheaux, 38, and Cerissa Laura Riley, 31, are charged with rape by use of drugs, oral copulation by anesthesia or controlled substance, assault with intent to commit sexual offense, and possession of a controlled substance for sale. Robicheaux is also accused of firearms violations.

Investigators believe Riley approached the women at a bar or restaurant, then invited her boyfriend over, Orange County District Attorney Tony Rackauckas said Tuesday.

He said Riley and Robicheaux met one woman, 32, at a restaurant in Newport Beach in April 2016. On another occasion, they invited her to a party and took her back to his apartment once she was intoxicated, Rackauckas said.

Afterward, they drugged and raped the woman, the district attorney said. He said the incident was recorded on video.

The woman contacted Newport Beach police the next day and tested positive for multiple controlled substances.

Six months later, prosecutors say, another woman alleged the couple sexually assaulted her at the apartment after she got drunk at a bar with them.

The district attorney's office said she woke up and screamed for help until a neighbor called police to the scene. Authorities don't know if that incident was also recorded, Rackauckas said.
The "lack of video evidence" doesn't seem to be exonerating in the second victim's case, especially considering a third party heard the screams for help and called police!

According to this article about the dropping of the charges,

Quote:
The case made international headlines and was an issue in the 2018 election for district attorney, when Spitzer challenged incumbent Tony Rackauckas.
If the new DA was actually campaigning on a pledge to drop these charges before he was even the DA and the review was even conducted, and if it's fair to suggest investigators should look for connections between the previous DA and the victims, I would say it's fair for investigators to also look for any connections between the new DA and the charged suspects.
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Old 5th February 2020, 09:11 PM   #12
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So to be clear, the number "1000" actually refers to the number of video files they found on the suspects' phone, not the number of alleged victims.

Quote:
Rackauckas estimated more than 1,000 videos were on the phone and said then that "there might be many unidentified victims out there."
"there might be many unidentified victims" not "1000" victims.

Certainly merits more scrutiny it seems.
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Old 5th February 2020, 09:14 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by Puppycow View Post
So to be clear, the number "1000" actually refers to the number of video files they found on the suspects' phone, not the number of alleged victims.



"there might be many unidentified victims" not "1000" victims.
As used by the prior DA, yes.

It seems it's the current DA that wants to assert the previous one was accusing the doctor of having so many victims:

Quote:
“The prior District Attorney and his chief of staff manufactured this case and repeatedly misstated the evidence to lead the public and vulnerable women to believe that these two individuals plied up to 1,000 women with drugs and alcohol in order to sexually assault them—and videotape the assaults,” Spitzer said in a blistering statement.
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Old 5th February 2020, 09:17 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by Checkmite View Post
As used by the prior DA, yes.

It seems it's the current DA that wants to assert the previous one was accusing the doctor of having so many victims:
If true, that seems like a vile abuse of his office by the previous DA.
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Old 5th February 2020, 09:39 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by smartcooky View Post
If true, that seems like a vile abuse of his office by the previous DA.
The key part being "if true" it seems. I'm starting to see another angle entirely though.

Or the truth may lie somewhere in between, which is starting to look like a plausible theory.

The current DA and the former DA appear to be political rivals. In fact, I'm doing a little digging, and these two have a history together:

OC District Attorney Explains Why He Fired Top Deputy

Quote:
Orange County District Attorney Tony Rackauckas said Wednesday he fired the man he was grooming to succeed him, because the prosecutor bullied staffers and had other ethical lapses.

But Todd Spitzer responded by calling Rackauckas a corrupt prosecutor and accused him of letting deputy district attorneys withhold exculpatory evidence against a carjacker who was wrongly convicted.

Rackauckas, his chief of staff, Susan Kang Schroeder, and four top deputies met with reporters for about two hours today to give Rackauckas a chance to explain why he fired Spitzer in August.

Spitzer followed up with his own two-hour-plus news conference.

Rackauckas said he wanted to "set the record straight,'' because Spitzer has sniped at the him since the firing.

"He's made a lot of statements, and the public needs to get answers to some of these issues,'' Rackauckas said.

Rackauckas said he plans to run for another term in 2014 to stop Spitzer, who also plans to run for District Attorney in four years.
So there's clearly a lot of personal bad blood between the former DA and the current one.
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Old 5th February 2020, 11:29 PM   #16
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On the Todd Spitzer Wikipedia page, I found this:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Todd_Spitzer

Quote:
Controversies

In April 2015, CBS Los Angeles and the Voice of OC reported Spitzer retrieved a gun and handcuffs from his vehicle, handcuffed a man who he felt was behaving aggressively towards him, then called 911 at a Wahoo's Fish Taco restaurant in Foothill Ranch, CA[11] The handcuffed man was questioned about the incident, but was released by OC Sheriff's Department deputies.[12] Video footage of the event was later released.[13] In August 2017, as the result of a Superior Court lawsuit, Orange County was required to reimburse approximately $121,000 in legal fees that the news site Voice of OC had spent in order to get Spitzer to release emails and other documents he had withheld that related to this event.[14]

In September 2017, taxpayers paid $150,000 settlement to an ex Playboy Playmate and former aid, Christine Richters, who sued Spitzer for having a “raging temper” and work place harassment.[15]

On October 30, 2018, the Chairman of the Orange County Board of Supervisor declared, during Item 10 at hour thirty five minutes into the board meeting, Supervisor Spitzer used extortionary tactics in campaign fundraising from the dais during the Oct. 30, 2018, Orange County Board of Supervisor’s meeting. The Chairman of the Board of Supervisors stated that Spitzer brought in throngs of television crews to forcefully announce the termination of GTL’s contract with the County of Orange during a previous Board of Supervisor’s meeting. Within days following of said meeting, GTL lobbyists made a $40,000 plus contribution to a Political Action Committee (PAC) supporting Supervisor Spitzer and sent out mailers on his behalf during the 2018 election cycle.[16]
There's a YouTube video (which I haven't watched) of the incident at the fish taco restaurant.
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Old 6th February 2020, 11:16 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by Puppycow View Post
So to be clear, the number "1000" actually refers to the number of video files they found on the suspects' phone, not the number of alleged victims.

"there might be many unidentified victims" not "1000" victims.

Certainly merits more scrutiny it seems.
Damn, a thousand video files? Does it say what kind of phone he had? That's a lot of storage.
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Old 10th February 2020, 05:45 PM   #18
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Well now, this is a very interesting development. In court, the DA moved to withdraw the charges against Robicheaux and Riley as they announced they would...but the judge said no!

Quote:
The same day, the Orange County district attorney's office made a motion to dismiss the case in front of Superior Court Judge Gregory Jones.

But instead of granting that motion, as many expected, the judge took it "under submission" and allowed more time for all parties to present more facts, Fell said.

The judge also ordered discovery to be turned over to the alleged victims' attorneys "so that we could evaluate the facts of the case, which, quite frankly, we haven't had access to at this stage of the game," Fell said.

The judge said he would rule by April 3, CNN affiliate KTLA reported.
I suppose this makes some sense, considering certain facts that are currently known:

- The case was apparently used as a political football during the race for the DA election, meaning there's a potential for the new DA's dropping of the case to be politically-motivated

- The alleged victims reportedly came forward independently, not as a consequence of being identified in the recordings that the new DA contends don't show anything

- At least one of the victims' allegations do not involve recordings at all, and is ostensibly corroborated by a third-party witness who heard cries for help and called the police, making the supposed lack of recorded evidence irrelevant to those particular allegations

I think the fact that the judge has ordered the discovery materials to be handed over to the victims' own attorneys supports the possibility that he may have misgivings about the DA's impartiality.
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Old 10th February 2020, 07:02 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by Checkmite View Post
Well now, this is a very interesting development. In court, the DA moved to withdraw the charges against Robicheaux and Riley as they announced they would...but the judge said no!

The case was apparently used as a political football during the race for the DA election
Oh, the DA wouldn't spike a real case and potentially let violent criminals get off just to get one over on their political opponents, would they....... would they?

Side note: It has never ceased to amaze me that officials in positions such as "Sherriff" and "District Attorney" are elected to their office. Talk about opening the door for corruption.
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Old 11th February 2020, 03:51 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by Checkmite View Post
- The case was apparently used as a political football during the race for the DA election
Indeed it was.

I did note the history between these two men in my posts above.

The current DA once worked for the former DA and was fired by him. Supposedly he was "being groomed" as the "heir apparent" before that. There are also other curious facts about him on his Wikipedia page. (which seem to support the notion that he was fired with good reason)
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Old 12th February 2020, 02:55 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by smartcooky View Post
Oh, the DA wouldn't spike a real case and potentially let violent criminals get off just to get one over on their political opponents, would they....... would they?

Side note: It has never ceased to amaze me that officials in positions such as "Sherriff" and "District Attorney" are elected to their office. Talk about opening the door for corruption.
If voters could be relied upon to evaluate candidates objectively, and if candidates were not allowed to participate in their own campaigns, the process might work. In the real world, the process is insane.
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Old 13th February 2020, 12:07 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by Checkmite View Post
Well now, this is a very interesting development. In court, the DA moved to withdraw the charges against Robicheaux and Riley as they announced they would...but the judge said no!



I suppose this makes some sense, considering certain facts that are currently known:

- The case was apparently used as a political football during the race for the DA election, meaning there's a potential for the new DA's dropping of the case to be politically-motivated

- The alleged victims reportedly came forward independently, not as a consequence of being identified in the recordings that the new DA contends don't show anything

- At least one of the victims' allegations do not involve recordings at all, and is ostensibly corroborated by a third-party witness who heard cries for help and called the police, making the supposed lack of recorded evidence irrelevant to those particular allegations

I think the fact that the judge has ordered the discovery materials to be handed over to the victims' own attorneys supports the possibility that he may have misgivings about the DA's impartiality.
Originally Posted by smartcooky View Post
Oh, the DA wouldn't spike a real case and potentially let violent criminals get off just to get one over on their political opponents, would they....... would they?

Side note: It has never ceased to amaze me that officials in positions such as "Sherriff" and "District Attorney" are elected to their office. Talk about opening the door for corruption.
I wonder whether the judge in this case is also elected? From the outside I am not convinced that the US practice of electing so many judicial officials and politicising so many public appointments is on balance a 'good thing'.
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