Virginia Republican Dick Black says he doesn’t see how anyone can prosecute a husband who sexually assaults his wife.† But in California, Crystal Harris managed to do just that.† Her husband is serving time for forcing her to have oral sex with him against her will — an act she caught on tape, leading to his conviction.
But once he gets out of jail, she’ll have to pay.† Literally.† The courts are ordering her to pay alimony to her now ex-husband.† According to 10News, San Diego: “Crystal Harris was the breadwinner, earning a six-figure salary, while Shawn Harris was unemployed. Vista Judge Gregory Pollock oversaw the Harris’ divorce and was perfectly within California law when he ordered Crystal to pay Shawn $1,000 a month once he was released from prison.’I can’t look at a 12-year marriage where one side is making $400 a month, the other side is making over $11,000 and say no spousal support,’ Pollock said in court. ‘That would be an abuse of discretion.’”
Forcing a rape victim to pay her attacker, and monthly?† Somehow, that isn’t an “abuse?”
As Jezebel writes, it’s likely the scenario hasn’t come up often or been challenged before just because of the assumptions that go along with men and women. “Stereotype might dictate that breadwinners are more likely to be rapists, but neither making money nor committing sexual assault are exclusively male acts. And no one who’s been raped, male or female, should have to pay their attacker.”
But until the law is changed, Harris will be forced to relive the assault over and over as she writes a check to the man who abused her. “It makes me feel victimized all over again that I should have to pay a dime to this man who has turned my life upside down.”
Photo credit: Prashanthns, via wikimedia commons
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