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Evidence Of Pregnancy And Virginity Admissible In Michigan Rape Case

Jul 12, 2018

Michigan Supreme Court Building
Credit Wikipedia Media Commons / wikipedia.org

The Michigan Supreme Court has weighed in on what kinds of evidence can be admitted in sexual assault cases.


The court says evidence of a minor’s previous virginity and subsequent pregnancy and abortion can be used in a rape trial.  In the Wayne County case, the defense tried to argue the evidence was not admissible, in part, because it’s evidence of her sexual conduct.  Evidence of a victim’s sexual conduct is not allowed under Michigan’s Rape Shield Statute.  

Bill Vailliencourt is with the Prosecuting Attorneys Association of Michigan.  He says there may be some cases where this type of evidence is not allowed.

“In this case, this was a circumstance where the victim was voluntarily offering the evidence.  In these circumstances, it’s not something the law was designed to preclude.”

A man is charged with sexually assaulting and impregnating a 14-year-old girl. 

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—Cheyna Roth is a reporter for the Michigan Public Radio network.  Contact WEMU News at 734.487.3363 or email us at studio@wemu.org