PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — A local woman who says she was a victim of sexual assault says she’s angered that powerful men appear to be getting away with sexual assault and not getting prosecuted.
She says her own case wasn’t prosecuted because of a lack of evidence. Even so, she’s urging other victims to come forward.
The woman, who we won’t identify, says she was raped at a home just off Pitt’s campus last September. She went to the police, but the district attorney said there wasn’t enough evidence to prosecute. Now, she’s speaking out and calling on other victims to speak out, too.
She’s a recent graduate of Pitt and is pursuing her career, but her life was shattered last September when she says she went to a friend’s apartment off campus and he raped her.
“It’s really sad and disheartening,” the woman said.
She says she called police and was interviewed by the Allegheny County District’s Attorney office, but they wouldn’t charge the alleged attacker.
“I did have convincing evidence. It’s just you can’t have any doubt, and to prove to twelve people that when it’s something you don’t see, there’s not video footage… it’s hard,” she said.
The District Attorney, through a spokesman, acknowledged the case and says: “We have an ethical responsibility not to go forward with a prosecution if we cannot reasonably expect a conviction and that is the case with this set of facts.”
“Anyone who comes forward is serious, but I don’t feel like it’s being viewed that way because it’s so, so hard to prove,” the woman said.
This woman’s fight for justice isn’t over. An investigation continues under Title IX. It’s a civil rights law that prohibits gender discrimination in schools, and they investigate sexual harassment and assault cases. Title IX investigators at Pitt declined to comment on this case.
“It really has given me perspective on what’s going on in the world right now and how sorry I am for other people who go through what I went through and who aren’t getting the justice they deserve,” she said.
She also tells KDKA she fears her alleged attacker will assault other women, and she says it’s not hard for her to understand why many women who accused powerful men took years to come forward. She says it’s extremely difficult to do.