The news that Kentucky teenager Savannah Dietrich will not be facing a contempt of court charge for tweeting the names of the boys who sexually assaulted her has emerged.
The boys admitted to sexually assaulting Dietrich in juvenile court, but she was annoyed by the leniency of the sentence they received and despite the fact that everyone involved in the case was ordered not to speak about it by the judge, Dietrich named her attackers on Twitter. She said that they had shared pictures of her being assaulted with their friends, so she felt she was totally within her rights to name them.
The boys’ attorneys initially filed a motion to charge Dietrich with contempt of court and this was picked up by the media who reported the story. She immediately had the support of American public, the majority of whom felt incredibly angered by the fact that a victim of a terrible sexual assault could be treated like this.
Elizabeth Beier, 22, who had not even met or spoken to Dietrich, was so moved by her story that she started a petition on Change.org, calling for the charges against her to be dropped. In just one day, the petition got 62,000 signatures, which says a lot about how strongly the public feel about the case.
Beier said: “When I read it, I was appalled and outraged and thought, `Somebody has to do something about this. Who is going to do something about this…Everyone wants this girl to have peace and time to recover and not another trauma like jail time.”
Beier commended Dietrich’s bravery for coming forward about the attack and speaking out about what she felt was an injustice in the lenient punishment doled out to her attackers.
On Monday, the attorneys revealed that they would be dropping the motion to charge Dietrich although they denied that it had anything to do with the public support her case gathered. One of the attorneys, David Mejia said that the purpose of the motion was to enforce the law that projects juveniles and their actions from disclosure, but he dropped the motion because their names were already out and that could not be reversed.
National Organization for Women President Terry O’Neill said the dropping of the motion against Dietrich represented “a huge victory not only for Ms. Dietrich, but for women all over the country.”
(Via Daily Mail)