Assault victim's tweets prompt contempt case

Number 25741
Subject Juvenile Justice System
Source Courier-Journal (Louisville, Ky.)
State Kentucky
Year 2012
Publication Date 7/21/12; 7/24/12; 7/26/12; 8/29/12; 8/31/12; 9/1/12; 9/13/12; 9/15/12
Summary For 17-year-old Savannah Dietrich, it was like being victimized twice – first by the two boys who sexually assaulted her while she was passed out and then sent photos of the assault to their friends; secondly, by a secretive juvenile justice system that appeared more interested in protecting her attackers than her. Frustrated by what she felt was a lenient plea bargain for her two attackers, Savannah lashed out on Twitter – despite a judge’s warning that no one should talk about the incident because the case was in juvenile court. "There you go, lock me up," Savannah tweeted, as she named the boys who she said sexually assaulted her. "I'm not protecting anyone that made my life a living Hell." Though threatened with contempt of court, Savannah refusal to stay quiet, and her decision to talk publicly to Courier-Journal reporter Jason Riley resulted in a series of stories that drew national attention and helped pry the lid off Kentucky’s secretive juvenile courts – potentially opening more cases in the future to ensure justice is done.
Category Contest Entry
Keywords Sexual assults; juvenile justice system; juvenile court; Twitter
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