There is no pleasant way to put it: violence takes place on any street, at any school and within any walls. Because this harsh truth is so common, some New York residents face obstacles when attempting to prove that a crime never happened in the first place. An assault charge can muddy the waters even further, as it can be difficult to separate fact from fiction. Whichever the case, those facing assault charges that have no factual grounding can find the process challenging to navigate.
Many different opinions surround false allegations of violence, and an article in Quartz takes a look at what those viewpoints might say about the issue’s bigger picture. How does one differentiate between true and false assault accusations? Quartz unearths statistics from the National Registry of Exonerations to show that, since 1989, 52 cases in which men faced assault charges ended in exoneration after they were found innocent. During that time, 790 people received exonerations for murder charges. The Quartz article also points out that a large majority of those who are the subject of a false assault complaint (such as rape) never learn of the allegations to begin with, as many are dropped. With rape specifically, Quartz ruminates on the number of underage girls who go through an unwanted pregnancy or are out past curfew and lie to parents about an assault — many of these instances end in police reports at parents’ requests.
Men Against Abuse Now, an all-male group against violence at Stanford University, provides numerous resources on the myths of false accusations. One resource states that roughly two percent of all rape and other sex charges are ultimately false; this percentage is the same as other felonies. However, MAAN also estimates that only 40 percent of all rape cases reach the police, as many go unreported. In addition, only one in two rape claims result in prosectuion. The tricky aspects of assault charges make it all the more important to deal with such situations promptly and appropriately.