by James C. Sherlock
Any time you think there is only one system of justice in America, consider these two stories I offer below, one a progressive dream and the other true.
The true story will show some progressives care more about their dogma than kids.
And any time you think only big city progressives don’t give a damn about child victims of crime, like in Chicago or New York, read the true one below.
It is underway in Loudoun County.
A progressive fable. Have you heard about the plot by a right-wing school superintendent to protect a white supremacist accused of two rapes of schoolgirls? The confirmed rapes happened while the girls and the boy were in school — or two different schools in his case, five months apart?
This story took place in a deep red school district in one of the rectangular states out west.
The suspect in the first rape was arrested and released.
The superintendent transferred the kid to a school that would offer “a more welcoming environment” for him, and failed to report the first rape. The kid five months later raped another 14 year-old in the new school.
The progressive father of the girl raped in the first felony was arrested for complaining about it at a school board meeting amid the denials of the rape by the superintendent. The aggrieved and grieving father was prosecuted personally and immediately by the right wing state’s attorney, who sought jail time.
The Department of Justice leapt into action, designating the rapes as hate crimes, even though all of the people involved were White. There were discussions “on background” that the rapist might be associated with the Proud Boys.
The superintendent was named a “person of interest” in the attempted coverup of the first rape. Charges of aiding and abetting the commission of a felony are under consideration in the case of the second rape.
The superintendent blamed “the confusing system” for his failure to report the first offense. Neither the FBI nor the U. S. Attorney were amused.
The superintendent has been relieved of his duties by the school board.
A true story. That story did not happen, at least in one of the rectangular states.
The actually story happened in Virginia, and all of the references to the political right in the fable were replaced by the progressive left in Loudoun County, and the victims were 14 year-old-girls of no known political persuasion.
The facts of the case so far:
- The first rape was May 28. The assailant, smart enough to take advantage of the new transgender rules, wore a skirt to gain entrance to the girls bathrooms. That made him a member of a protected class in Loudoun County Public Schools (LCPS), not the girls;
- The father of the victim was charged with disorderly conduct and resisting arrest during a June 22 School Board meeting after he brought up the rape and Superintendent Ziegler denied it had happened. Ziegler later claimed he misunderstood the question.
- The disgraceful Loudoun County Commonwealth’s Attorney Buta Biberaj is an ultra-progressive who professed in her campaign that she does not believe in incarceration. She went immediately after the dad of the May 28th victim who was arrested for protesting at the school board meeting. She sought jail time. It was considered unprecedented for the Commonwealth’s Attorney to prosecute a misdemeanor. (She got the job in no small part because George Soros gave over $800,000 to her campaign — for local Commonwealth’s Attorney. Biberaj joined Terry McAuiffe Oct. 2 at a campaign event in Leesburg.)
- The Sheriff’s investigation lasted two months. The Sheriff’s office arrested a suspect on July 8 on two counts of forcible sodomy. He was freed on a supervised release program and outfitted with an electronic monitoring devise on July 27.
- The May 28 case is still pending court proceedings by, who else, Buta Biberaj.
- LCPS superintendent Scott Ziegler transferred the suspect to another high school in Ashburn pending trial without notifying anyone at the new school about the first rape;
- On Oct. 6, the suspect was accused of raping again in his new school. Again he wore a skirt to gain access to the girls bathroom. The girl notified the school resource officer, a member of the Sheriff’s Department. The boy was placed under arrest. No word available on whether the boy was still wearing the ankle monitor. If so, it must have looked unusual under the skirt.
- The Sheriff’s Department has confirmed that the assailant in both cases was the same person. The teenager was sent to the Juvenile Detention Center. No word on whether he has been released pending trial. He is due in court on Oct. 25. Should be interesting to watch Ms. Biberaj at work.
Ziegler has blamed confusing and restrictive Title IX laws and policies for his lack of action.
Nathanial Cline of the Loudoun Times continues to write the definitive account of this scandal.
According to Blue Ridge District representative Ian Serotkin wrote in a post published on his Facebook page that:
“Schools are prohibited from disciplining a student without following the Title IX grievance process, which includes investigating formal complaints of sexual harassment.”
Serotkin added in his statement that LCPS does implement interim measures to protect the safety of students involved in a reported incident, as well as to deter retaliation and preserve the integrity of an ensuing investigation. (Sherlock comment: Still no word on the ankle monitor.)
“LCPS has complied and continues to comply with its obligations under Title IX,” he said, mirroring the statement later published by LCPS.
That is a lie.
LCPS is responsible for Title IX compliance because it “receives federal financial assistance from HHS for their educational program or activity.” The Title IX Compliance page of the Department of HHS offers sexual assault of a student as an example of sexual harassment. Current LCPS Title IX compliance policy does not.
The LCPS Board is at work as I write this modifying its Title IX compliance policies.
The draft policy changes “unwelcome conduct” to include the changes in red:
Sexual harassment means conduct on the basis of sex that satisfies one or more of the following:
a. The provision of aid, benefit, or service for a student on an individual’s participation in unwelcome sexual conduct;
b. Unwelcome conduct determined by a reasonable person to be so severe, pervasive, and objectively offensive that it effectively denies a person equal access to LCPS’s education program or activity; or.
1. Sexual assault” as defined in 20 U.S.C. 1092(f)(6)(A)(v)
2. “Dating violence” as defined in 34 U.S.C. 12291(a)(10)
3. “Domestic violence” as defined in 34 U.S.C. 12291(a)(8)
4. “Stalking” as defined in 34 U.S.C. 12291(a)(30)
Those updates are on the school board Discipline Committee agenda for its October 25th meeting. The same day as the first court hearing on the second rape.
So no, neither LCPS not its superintendent have complied with their Title IX obligations.
Ziegler is saying that he considered the existing policy (in black) above to tie his hands from reporting the rape under Title IX. To do that he is insisting that he believed that rape did not constitute “unwelcome conduct.” That is the desperate excuse of a scoundrel.
Ziegler has not been relieved by the Loudoun County School Board, but the Chair of that Board issued a statement that she is praying for the victims.
I guess that counts for something.
DOJ has not intervened, even though parents have urged U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland to direct pertinent federal prosecutors to open a Title IX investigation into LCPS.
No word from Garland. He has the FBI investigating parents like the father of the first rape victim who was arrested for protesting the rape at a school board meeting.
If that had happened to a daughter of mine, the first time Mr. Ziegler would have met with me would not have been at a school board meeting.
I entered the search term “Loudoun rapes” in the Washington Post search engine. There are no results for 2021. Ditto for the New York Times.
As for CNN, it featured gushing coverage August 12, 2021, over the LCPS board adopting expanded rights for “transgender and gender-expansive students,” but nothing on the rapes.
It reported in the same story that the LCPS transgender policy is consistent with the Virginia Department of Education’s model policies for the treatment of transgender students.
The “model policies” controversy was covered extensively in this space.
You get the idea. Rapes by a kid in a skirt in the girls bathrooms does not fit the mainstream national news “narrative.”
And in some places there are two different systems of justice. The girls in these cases are considered collateral damage to a higher good in certain high-rent zip codes.
The Virginia Department of Education, zip code 23219, apparently has no comment on the handling of the rapes. It did however, on Sept 28 of this year, recognize LCPS as an Innovative School Division for, inter alia:
“Supporting equity through culturally-responsive professional development and instruction.”
I guess that is considered a win in progressive quarters.
This scandal will not be put in their win column, or even mentioned.