Target: District Judge Deana ‘Dee’ McDonald
Goal: Remove charges against victim who revealed the names of her rapists.
Seventeen-year-old Savannah Dietrich was instructed by a judge not to discuss her rape with the public, silencing her as part of a plea bargain awarded to the two men that assaulted her. Now she has defied the gag order by posting the names of her attackers on Twitter, and potentially faces 180 days in jail and a $500 fine as a result. The court must not charge this victim in order to protect the men who raped her.
Savannah Dietrich was raped by two acquaintances at a party. The men took pictures of the act, sharing them with various people throughout Savannah’s high school. After pleading guilty, her assailants convinced the court to protect their identity from public knowledge. The girl had pictures depicting the molestation of her naked body spread throughout her school, and is now being ordered to respect the privacy of the men responsible. The court seeks to charge Savannah for communicating about the incident on her personal social media page. In a society that struggles with unreported rapes, we are punishing a victim for speaking out.
By silencing Savannah, the Kentucky Court of Justice protects criminals and violates a victim’s constitutional right of free speech. The young men who attacked this girl deserve the same public humiliation that they subjected her to by distributing pictures of her rape. Demand that District Judge Deana ‘Dee’ McDonald give Savannah Dietrich a public hearing and exonerate her of all charges.
Dear Judge McDonald,
Savannah Dietrich was raped and publicly humiliated by two men, and now the court wishes to punish her for identifying the assailants. These men violated her privacy (as well as her body), and do not deserve for their own privacy to be protected. In a country were a vast number of sexual assaults go unreported, we as a society should be encouraging young girls to speak out against their attackers.
To punish Savannah is a denial of her right to free speech and a huge step backwards for the sexually assaulted. We must not continue to perpetuate victim blaming in this manner. Please protect the real victim in this case by clearing Savannah Dietrich of all charges and allowing her to have a public hearing.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: firepile via Flickr.