Heightened local and national public interest in a high-profile rape case involving a popular entertainer necessitates a reminder to the media that the release of information in such events is severely limited by law and basic decency.
The need to ensure justice and a mandate to protect the rights of both the victim and the accused leads to an abundance of caution with the release of information.
Sexual assault can be frightening and traumatic. Every victim has his or her unique story, yet many may feel shame, fear, anxiety, confusion and even guilt. Many victims do not report sexual assaults because they are afraid of being publicly embarrassed, discredited or further humiliated for coming forward. Victims may stay quiet because their attacker is someone they know, they may fear retaliation or that no one will believe them. The accused also has rights that can be threatened by rampant media speculation. Responsible media must refrain from actions that will further traumatize victims or threaten the right of the accused to a fair trial.
Cases prosecuted by the Caddo Parish District Attorney’s office will not be tried in the media or the court of public opinion. Cases will be presented in a court of law based on the evidence, not media or public speculation.
For these reasons, information released by the Caddo Parish District Attorney’s office on this case will be limited to the dates of future court appearances, the basic nature of those events and the outcome of those events to the degree allowed by the courts and by state law.
Custody and bond questions should be directed to Caddo Correctional Center and the Caddo Parish Sheriff’s office, or the appropriate jurisdiction where an offender connected with this case might be held.