16 November 2014

Evans

If you don't follow British news media you will probably never have heard of Chedwyn Evans. He is a convicted twenty five year old rapist who has just completed his sentence -  two years in prison.

Back in May 2011, he received a phone call from a friend called McDonald . Evans was invited to visit a hotel near Rhyl in North Wales - the purpose being to have sexual intercourse with a nineteen year old girl who was comatose because of excess of alcohol. McDonald had brought the girl to the hotel and had already had sex with her. Evans duly arrived at the hotel and committed the wicked deed while McDonald filmed the coupling on his mobile phone.

Oh, one thing I haven't yet mentioned about Evans is that he was a professional footballer. He played for both Manchester City and Wales before being transferred to Sheffield United whose famous Bramall Lane ground is just a mile from this keyboard.

Even when Evans was in prison, a debate began about whether or not he should be allowed to take up his footballing career when he came out. Sheffield United supporters appeared to fall into two camps. Evans supporters, who often dared to suggest that a rape hadn't happened in the first place, said that once a man has served his punishment he has the right to return to his occupation. Evans's detractors said that allowing him to play for Sheffield United again would appear to endorse the crime of rape and send out a bad message to women and young supporters alike.

Last week, Evans began training with Sheffield United once more and this has added fuel to the debate. Olympic athlete and gold medal winner Jessica Ennis has demanded that her name be removed from one of the stands at Bramall Lane if Evans ever plays for the club again. Other notable supporters have also withdrawn their patronage.Meanwhile, Evans has appeared in a video on his own website, holding his devoted girlfriend's hand while reading a script that basically says "I didn't rape that woman and I want my job back".

But what about the victim? Well she was moved from her home and family in North Wales, re-housed and given a new identity. She had become the target of vicious internet trolls. They have since discovered her new whereabouts and her new name and have outed her meaning that the authorities have had to give her a second new name and a second new location. She is still very young and at a time when she surely needs her family and friends around her her life has been thrown into chaos. It is as if she is being punished while her attacker - Evans, who has never once said sorry, expects to return to professional football.

The issue has been debated on radio and television as well as in the coffee bars and pubs of Sheffield and North Wales. You may already be able to tell where my sympathies lie for I have kept referring to Evans by his surname. He is usually known as Ched - Ched Evans. I feel for the victim and I am appalled that there are so many men who blindly believe that Evans should be allowed to lace up his boots again and run on to the pitch as if nothing had happened. Many imagine that the victim was "probably asking for it" and she got "what she deserved". I mean if a woman goes out in high heels and a short skirt then gets blind drunk, what can she expect?

If I were a young footballer getting ready for a training session, there is no way I would hang my clothes up next to the peg of a convicted rapist and there's no way I would want to pass the ball to him. Last night a fellow in our local pub suggested that men are the victims of women's protests when it comes to rape - all a woman has to do is to cry the word and the police will come running these days. But I said such cases were rare and it was much more common for women to suffer memories of rape in silence - fearing the consequences should they report their assaults.

Standing up against Evans is in my mind the equivalent of standing up for women. It is surely time to step forward into the light.

26 comments:

  1. I didn't know the whole story before reading your post YP. When I saw something about it on TV, I was appalled to see a man with two young sons beside him saying something like "he made a silly mistake and should be allowed back in the team". Rape is just a silly mistake??? I really hope he gets kicked out soon. Some of these footballers think they are invincible.

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    1. Yes - puffed up with pride, knowing that he had thousands in his bank account - he thought he could do anything.

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  2. i dont think its standing up for women
    i just think its standing up for what is right and just
    he has served his time ...yes...... but he and everyone like him need to understand that the ramifications of his behaviour are long reaching

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    1. Can you imagine a male nurse or a teacher returning to work after being in prison for rape? Unthinkable.

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  3. Words fail me. I just hope the other players put in transfer requests and get the 'ell out of there. If I was a Sheff U fan (I know, it's hardly likely but...), I'd be publicly telling the directors where they can shove their season tickets and over-priced shirts.
    Shocked also that you only get 2 years in prison for rape.

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    1. I think he was sentenced to five years but of course got plenty of remission.

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  4. MorningAJ blogged about this the other day. That poor girl ~ Why would anyone think they have a right to persecute her and hunt her down? Is Britain big enough for her not to be found again?

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    1. If the worst comes to the worst they'll have to send her to Australia!

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  5. I haven't read any of the reports but have seen them.
    I just hope that the fans refuse to contribute to United's coffers and that all other footballers have the decency not to play with or against him.
    It appears that it won't be the case.
    Very sad for the girl. Had she been treated with more compassion and competence then who knows how many more young lasses would come forward. It can't be a one off if he'd drive to Wales to give a comatose girl one.

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    1. Yes Adrian. Other young rape victims will see what has happened to Evans's victim and think twice before reporting sexual assault.

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  6. Knowing at least two dozen young men, who are friends of my son, not one of them would have made a "mistake" like this, and all would be remorseful and make amends if anything like it had happened with their knowledge. There are so many decent men who are hurt by association when a butthead like this is not dealt with properly. I think the people who refuse to support the team are to be applauded. It's not just sex "mistakes" that athletes make, gambling and dog fighting are other things that have sent the poor dears to jail in the U.S.

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    1. Yes. You are right Jan. Decent young men (the majority) are tainted by the wrongdoing of self-centred fellows like Evans.

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  7. While "if a woman goes out in high heels and a short skirt then gets blind drunk, what can she expect?" is true to an extent (honestly, a 19-year-old should know better than drink so much that she completely loses control over what is being done to her), that is not the point here. The point is that, even if I were to walk on the street stark naked, that would NOT give any man (or woman) the right to touch me without my consciously given consent. And that he only had to serve 2 years, which were probably spent surrounded by all the comfort that money can buy behind the walls of a prison, the girl's life is ruined for many years to come, if not for ever.
    Hopefully the other players do the right thing. Because Evans obviously does not. And how can his current girlfriend still be his girlfriend after what he's done?!

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    1. We are on the same wavelength Miss Arian. You should see the girlfriend holding hands with Chedwyn on his website video. This was developed simply to fight what he sees as an injustice!!! Incredible.

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  8. Absolutely disgrace! Two years??????? And he's back training again! I wouldn't go near the scum if I was in the team...or in the opposing teams. The low-life!

    I'm sick to death of people who think they have the right to persecute and blame the victim. The perpetrators get off and the victim remains a victim for life!

    Evans is scum...lower than scum.

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    1. He got five years at first Lee but "good behaviour" reduced his time in prison to two years. I think you have got him sussed out perfectly!

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  9. It seems we're all of a similar opinion here on this one. Poor, silly girl . She certainly needs to leave the country for a time at least. However you haven't mentioned the charming Mr McDonald. I hope his sentence was even longer and that he is still in prison where they both belong. It seems footballers especially but other athletes too seem to think they can get away with this sort of thing because of the reckless behaviour of some girls who are then too intimidated to speak out and so let them get away with this type of crime. All this adoration of athletes because they have good hand-eye coordination and muscles amazes me!!

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    1. McDonald got away scot free! Even though the girl was blind drunk she had consented to go to the hotel with him.

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  10. And now the trolls are picking on Jessica Ennis for standing up for her beliefs. It worries me that so many men (I'm assuming it's men) still think that rape is somehow acceptable.

    Very clear explanation of the story. Well done for covering it.

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    1. It does seem that a large number of men have a warped attitude towards rape. This attitude is usually veiled but when revealed it is very ugly and very wrong.

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  11. Of course I agree absolutely with your - and all your commenters - views in the post's subject. What really is beyond my comprehension though is why any man would want to have sex with someone who was comatose.

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    1. In my mind sex is only joyous when those involved are willing partners. I think it is called consensual sex.

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    2. I guess the point gentlemen is that rape is an act of violence ~ not passion.

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    3. Exactly. It is about power, not about sex as such.

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  12. Indeed rape is always about power not sex - trolling of the victim and of people who stand up against the %&^%&%^$% upsets me even more than the outrageous appeals of innocence by the perpetrator.

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