Victim of recently-paroled rapist says she'll CCW

The Cleveland Plain Dealer, while reporting on the pending release of a man who spent 25 years in jail for a rape he says he didn't commit, quoted the man's victim as saying she'll carry a concealed firearm in case of a future attack.

The newspaper reports the nightmare began in 1979 when Kim Croft told police that he slashed her face, raped her, strangled her, stabbed her multiple times and left her for dead.

From the story:


    After denying parole 16 times, the Ohio Parole Board voted unanimously in December that Reece had served enough time.

    [His victim] said Monday the board did not exonerate Reece.

    "He is not being released as an innocent man," she said.

    Now [she] and Reece worry about each other.

    "I need to take precautions," she said, adding that these include carrying a concealed weapon.

When Ohio's concealed handgun licensure law was passed, the legislature's intent was to have replaced Ohio's flawed affirmative defense system (which rendered persons who carried firearms for self-defense guilty until they could prove themselves innocent) with a legal method to bear arms for self-defense that could be exercised almost immediately. As soon as a person realizes they are in danger, the legislature intended to have provided them with a legal method of bearing arms for self-defense - the Temporary Emergency License (TEL).

Almost immediately, several sheriffs throughout the state of Ohio began sharing their personal disdain for the new law by refusing to issue the licenses. One Franklin Co. resident, who had been victimized by a window peeker/ stalker, had to sue that county's sheriff after being told that her reasons were not good enough. The Ohio Supreme Court eventually affirmed OFCC's position on TELs.

The intent of the General Assembly was that victims in Ohio do not have to divulge specific, embarrassing details of their victimization, and do not have to submit to the intimidation of a discretionary process to exercise self defense.

No rape victim should have to sit down in front of a strange man in a sheriff's office to describe her trauma, or have her accusations called into question, in order to be able to obtain a legal means of protecting herself. No victim of assault, upon learning that his attacker has been release from prison, should have to wait up to 45 days for a sheriff to approve his CHL.

Very few people in Ohio have been able to take advantage of the TEL opportunity in the first 180 days. This may be, in part, because the law is new and few people are unaware of it. But it is certainly also due to misapplication of the law by sheriffs previous to our court victory. This is wrong, and if problems continue, we must again petition our legislators to reform the law.

Related Story:
AL: More women packing heat because of serial rapist

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