Weinstein Trial: Expert Testifies About Rape Victim Behaviors

“Sexual assault is not something we see on TV,” Dr. Barbara Ziv told the jury during Harvey Weinstein’s trial in Los Angeles, when she was asked by prosecutors on Tuesday to ” To bear witness to the “rape myth” – in other words, to avoid the public. There are societal beliefs about rape and sexual assault.

“A lot of things that people believe are not accurate or supported by the facts,” Xue said, telling the jury that the attitudes of rape victims are “contradictory.”

Ziv is a forensic psychologist and licensed physician who specializes in all aspects of sexual assault, evaluating the behavior of both victims and perpetrators. During her decades-long medical career, she has worked with more than a thousand rape victims, but has nothing to do with the Weinstein case and has not worked with any genes who claim they were Weinstein’s abusers. Profits are sacrifices. .

Ziv testified as an expert in Weinstein’s first criminal trial in New York City in 2020, as well as Bill Cosby’s 2018 sexual assault trial in Pennsylvania.

Ziv stood for hours. After her presentation to the jury, Weinstein’s defense attorney, Alan Jackson, examined Ziv at length, focusing on the differences between the legal and medical definitions of rape and consent.

“You testified about rape myths … that’s a sweeping generalization about behavior,” Jackson said, to which Ziv replied, “I’m here to find out what the truth is about rape. “

Ziv was called by the prosecution as an expert to strengthen their case. It is expected that later in the trial, the defense will also call a doctor or medical expert to weigh in on the memory loss and other issues that will give the jury a different perspective than Zee’s studies and psychiatric work.

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Memory is complex, Zeo explained to jurors, and rape victims always remember the “central trauma,” but small details of the attack — like the day, time, what their perpetrator was wearing, etc. — can disappear over the years

“If people don’t report it right away, they say they don’t remember it years later,” Ziv said. “It’s not like they’re lying…people are trying to do their best…they’re trying to remember.”

Ziv explained that while police sometimes use these “memory problems” to say that the victim is not credible, this has changed in recent years as awareness of rape victims.

As part of her presentation, Ziv debunked the “myth of rape,” telling the jury that many of the attitudes the general public would assume about rape victims are false, according to psychiatrists who Specializes in rape.

Sexual assaults often occur between people who know each other, Ziv said, although many people believe that assaults are usually committed by strangers. “Most people are sexually assaulted by someone they know,” she told the jury. She explained that while “stranger rape” does happen, most rapes involve people who know each other in some capacity, unlike what is commonly seen on television and film.

Rape victims don’t fight back against their attackers, despite many believing they will fight back, the psychiatrist told jurors. “Most people don’t resist,” Ziv said. “Even violent verbal yelling and screaming is not as common as we think. … It’s counterintuitive. You think if you’re going to be offended, you’re going to fight back.” “The bottom line is, that’s not the case,” she added.

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During cross-examination, Jackson asked Ziv if “some of them fight back.” She replied, “Some,” and then continued, “Do some women fight back? Sure. The myth is that it’s common.” Jackson then asked, “Some yelling, screaming and kicking?” “Some,” replied Zeff.

Ziv told the jury that rape victims usually don’t report it immediately, despite many people believing they would go to the police if they were assaulted..

“Sexual assault is an underreported crime,” Ziv said. “Even when it is reported, it is rarely prosecuted.”

She explained that when victims do report an assault, it’s often not to the authorities, but perhaps to a friend or family member — but never saying anything is also common. “There’s a huge percentage,” Ziv said [that] I have never said anything to anyone in my life.” Feeling “shame” is one reason many victims don’t talk about their assault, she said, but there are many reasons victims don’t talk. “This is a very difficult topic to discuss.” The psychiatrist added, “They are afraid of backlash…afraid of intrusion into their private lives…afraid of being classified as a liar or liar.”

Ziv told the jury that a rape victim’s post-rape demeanor, whether it’s happy or sad, doesn’t indicate whether they were assaulted or not. “Behavior after rape is variable,” she said. “You can’t tell if an individual has been sexually assaulted by their behavior.”

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Ziv explained that rape victims often have contact with their perpetrator after the attack, noting that the common belief is that a rape victim will never see or speak to their rapist again. She testified that many people see their perpetrators again, and may voluntarily continue to communicate with them for a variety of reasons.

“People operate in the same circle,” she suggested, suggesting that victims may not want friends to find out what happened. “It’s a really humiliating experience to be sexually assaulted by someone you know.”

One reason rape victims may talk to their perpetrator afterward is because “they want to feel it” or they want an apology. Often, persistent contact occurs because victims fear retaliation and “perpetual harm,” Ziv said, especially when a perpetrator is in a position of power. “When a perpetrator affects other aspects of your life … those things affect your path forever.”

Ziff also told the jury that it is common for rape victims to later have consensual sex with their attacker. “A lot of times people feel like they’re just damaged goods, and no one else will want them so they start acting like damaged goods.”

Jackson challenged Xue, asking, “Some avoid their attacker at all costs?”

“Yes,” she replied.

And when he asked, “Some go straight to the police?” “Some,” she replied.


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