Horrific Sydney gang rape of a 16-year-old girl involved 8 men
Shockingly, fathers and husbands were involved, too. Read more about what happened in this article, including tips on how fathers can help teach their sons to grow up respecting the rights of women and girls.
Earlier this week in Sydney, Australia, police on a regular graffiti operation seized a GoPro camera as part of their investigations. They were not prepared for the horrific footage they saw on the video, though.
According to The Sydney Morning Herald (SMH), "The footage allegedly depicts an unconscious or semi-conscious 16-year-old girl being raped by multiple offenders at a party in St Clair in May this year."
Police reports say that up to eight males were in the room, with a number of them raping the girl on the night of May 22.
Based on the video, detectives from the Child Abuse Squad tracked down the rapists, says the SMH.
Meanwhile, The Australian quotes Detective Chief Inspector Peter Yeomans as saying, “I had a number of my investigators looking at this and they were horrified at what they saw in this footage. It’s horrible. It’s terrible what happened to this young girl.”
A 17-year-old boy was arrested on Wednesday 14 October, along with four other men aged between 22 and 25. They have all been reportedly charged with a range of offences including aggravated sexual assault in company and aggravated indecent assault.
Shocking details emerge
Superintendent Yeomans reportedly told 2GB radio that the girl was small-framed and it is understood that her drink had been spiked:
"This girl is a very slight framed girl and these are very large framed men and, look, some of these adult males are married with children. It was quite obvious to investigators when viewing this footage that the child was either unconscious or semi-conscious during these assaults."
The girl is now receiving counselling. It is understood she didn't report the rape after it happened due to her lack of memory and fear of reprisal.
The four men were to appear in court yesterday (15 October), while the teenager was to appear in the Children's Court.
Boys MUST be taught to respect women
It is beyond disgusting and disturbing to learn that some of the men in the room where the young girl was gang raped are husbands and fathers.
What kind of an example are they setting for their children? What kind of an example is the father of Tristan Carlyle-Watson -- one of the accused -- setting when he reportedly defended his son by saying: "He has girlfriends all over the place. The way he gets on with girls ... why would he want to go waste his time and do that?"
Even though Carlyle-Watson may not have raped the girl, he stood there watching as fully-grown men sexually assaulted a child -- and didn't do anything. His act of staying silent is as bad as rape.
Deplorable acts like this involving the rape and abuse of young girls are all too common around the world. We hear of just a few reported cases. Who knows how many incidents go unreported?
It's certainly time we started educating our boys about respecting women, and this is where fathers can play a pivotal role.
Here are some important tips for dads, adapted from the National Center for Fathering, on just how they can do this and make a difference in the lives of many young women.
- Be a positive role model: Your son watches you and looks up to you. Use this influence to show your boy what respect for others, especially women, looks and sounds like.
- Teach your son about boundaries: Talk to your son about setting boundaries and respecting them. Tell him about what is appropriate and not when it comes to physical affection with a girl. Talk to him about potentially dangerous situations that could arise where alcohol and drugs are involved.
- Teach him to speak up: It's not okay for young men to look away when they see a woman being teased, harassed or sexually abused. If your son sees such an act taking place, he needs to immediately report it to the relevant authorities.
- Hold him accountable: If you see or hear of your son engaging in inappropriate behaviour with a girl, make it very clear to him that this is unacceptable and why it is so, while challenging him and encouraging him to do better.
Parents, we all have a huge responsibility to raise our children to be honest, respectful, responsible and caring adults. If we each do our part, we can possibly reduce, or even prevent horrific cases such as the one reported in this article.
Make a pledge to start now!
What are your own ideas on teaching young boys how to grow up respecting women? Do share your thoughts with us in a comment below.