Sexual Assault Case Closing Arguments; Defense Attorney Claims Victim ‘Mastermind,’ and Plays Jury 20 Minutes of Movie

By Jeramie Gutierrez

ALAMEDA, CA – The on-going sexual assault case of defendant Sean Jetter ended this week here in Alameda County Superior Court with two heated closing statements centered around the credibility of the alleged victim’s testimony and a 20-minute clip of a film played by the defense attorney.

The case goes to the jury for deliberation Monday.

Defense Attorney Patrick Ewing Clancy told the jury that the sexual assault victim, in light of many situational contradictions, lied to the court.

He brought up the delay that stopped the victim from coming out about his sexual abuse and why the first person he told was not, in fact, his mother but a friend: to “back him.”

Functionally, the alleged victim wished to corroborate with his friend to single out the sexual abuser. However, since the victim’s friend could not remember, Clancy suggested this would be a perfect opportunity for the friend, knowing about the false allegation, to hide certain information.

Attorney Clancy brought up the mystery that there has been no mention of bloody sheets or bloody bedspreads for a victim who said he has bled 10 to 20 separate times. Furthermore, the only US examination investigating the victim’s sexual abuse was from a “highly respected proctor” who found nothing.

In a similar vein, the DA brought up the question of why the mother was unaware of the alleged five-year-long sexual abuse of her son. He backed it up with the notion that “the more people you tell,” the harder it becomes to get your false allegation straight.

He finished his closing statement by hammering the fact that perjury should not belong in the courtroom.

“[The victim] has lied to you, the jury,” he said. He later stated a criminal charge does not guarantee that the crime has actually been committed and that a decision by the jury should not come down to something “imaginary,” referring to the victim’s testimony.

When Deputy District Attorney Connie Rae Campbell took over for her rebuttal, she was quick to refute that a certain doctor found that few minors fabricate sexual abuse stories. She explained that the one US examination happened eight to nine years after the last time the victim was sexually assaulted.

In addition, Campbell noted that underaged sodomy victims are rarely injured during the act. If they are, then those wounds disappear after two or three weeks.

Afterwards, she refuted defense attorney Campbell’s “false allegation” hypothesis, claiming that the victim, who appeared dilapidated and traumatized when giving testimony, was no “mastermind.”

In terms of gain, Campbell claimed that there would be none for the victim to waste everyone’s time in court for no reward. She also claimed the “false allegation” would not benefit the mother who, if she truly planned so, could have used the sexual abuse as a turning point in her divorce.

However, the mother did not carry out this plan. Campbell claimed that she, like anyone else, was unaware of her son’s abuse and had not planned to traumatize her son on purpose.

Most notably, Campbell retorted on defense counsel Clancy’s decision to play a 20-minute clip from a film, “a first in [her] career: having movies played.”

She explained to the jury that the film was “dramatical,” “thematic,” “depictions of some blockbuster, Hollywood movie;” and that she frankly did not “even know what [the defense attorney is] trying to get at.”

She reassured the court: “We are here because [the victim] is a victim of child molestation, not for watching movies about CIA investigations.”

About The Author

Jeramie Gutierrez is a fourth year French Studies major and Legal Studies and Sociology minor at the University of San Francisco with a growing interest in law.

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