Teenage girls are particularly apt to bring such charges against men, perhaps because of their own confusion and mental turmoil following an unfortunate and disturbing introduction to the idea of sexual intercourse.
Evelyn G., a fourteen-year-old girl was given an unusually strict upbringing by her mother, who warned her against letting a man touch or kiss her. The mother implied that even the slightest physical contact with a man could have ruinous results. Evelyn was terrified and at the same time, fascinated by the idea of sex. Since she was not allowed to date or to join in the after-school social activities of her friends, she had too much time to brood and daydream about the subject of sex. Her mother’s endless lectures and warnings only served to simulate her imagination.
Since both parents worked, Evelyn was left alone at home in the afternoons, and she was in the habit of answering the door clad only in shorts and a halter, or a housecoat. The grocery boy who made deliveries to the apartment testified that several times she asked him into the kitchen and had indicated by her looks and the tone of her voice that she would be receptive to his advances. He ignored these implied invitations until the afternoon when she came to the door wearing only a bath towel. He wanted to leave the groceries at the door but she insisted that he should come inside.
On this occasion, temptation proved too much, and he put his arms around her and tried to kiss her. She immediately became hysterical and when the neighbors arrived, she insisted that the boy had rape her. A medical examination disproved her accusation in this case. She was still a virgin and there weren’t any marks of a struggle on her body.
In the case where the girl is not a virgin, the accused would have had a more difficult time proving his innocence, especially if she believed strongly enough in her own fantasy, and had a sympathetic jury.