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How Doxxing And Shaming Sexual Assault Accusers Can Traumatize Idaho Victims

Racial Injustice MeToo Anniversary
Jae C. Hong/AP
FILE - In this Jan. 20, 2018, file photo, protesters gather at the Grand Park in Los Angeles for a Women's March against sexual violence and the policies of the Trump administration. As the #MeToo movement marks the third year since it received global recognition, movement founder Tarana Burke is working to make sure it remains inclusive and reclaims its original intent: A focus on marginalized voices and experiences. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong, File)

When rape allegations surfaced two weeks ago against Lewiston state Rep. Aaron von Ehlinger, many of his colleagues rushed to support him. One way some of them did that? By publicly releasing his accuser’s name.

At least one lawmaker, some far right blogs and others released the legislative staffer’s name in disparaging social media posts or in newsletters. Some even shared her photograph and details about her life.

In the meantime, Boise Police are conducting an investigation into the allegations and Rep. von Ehlinger denies the charges saying the encounter in March was consensual.

Idaho Matters talks with journalist Rebecca Boone with the Associated Press and Dr. Beronica Salazar with the Women and Children’s Alliance.

Gemma is the host of Idaho Matters, Boise State Public Radio's daily show which broadcasts live Monday-Friday at noon. She is an award-winning journalist and has spent the majority of her broadcasting career in Idaho. Gemma was a television news anchor and reporter in Boise for close to 15 years. She came to Boise in 1999 to start Fox 12.
Frankie Barnhill is the Senior Producer of Idaho Matters, Boise State Public Radio's daily show and podcast. She's always interested in hearing surprising and enlightening stories about life in the West. Have an idea for Idaho Matters? Drop her a line!