A 17-year old rape survivor in India has reportedly been raped a second time after police used her as “bait” to catch her attacker.
Two men allegedly sexually assaulted the teenager at knife point on July 7, after she went to meet a man whom she knew from Facebook, in Jalna, India, about 250 miles from Mumbai. The attackers allegedly stole her phone, recorded a video of the act on it, and threatened to blackmail her with the video, NDTV reported.
The next day, police decided to lay a trap and send her back to the same spot to catch her attackers. According to Inspector General of Police Vishwas Patil, the trap failed, as police followed too closely.
The following day, police made one more attempt to set a trap, under the guise of the girl getting her phone back, but due to a “miscommunication,” officers did not follow, and the girl was assaulted again, under a bridge near railway tracks.
“We were unaware she left,” said one officer, who explained that one of the girl’s attackers approached her to get off the road.
“The victim under the assumption that she was being escorted by the police, obliged but later learnt that she had no police official tailing her movements,” said the officer, according to the Indian Express.
After a tip, police arrested the girl’s alleged attackers, 19-year-old Nitin Savle and 21-year-old Sanjay Havare, hours later at a railway station.
The involved officers claim that the teen did not tell them before she had left to meet with her rapists. She thought that a police vehicle was following her and the alleged rapists, but it was not.
Vinod Ejjapwar, the lead officer who used the survivor as bait, is suspended pending a 20-day inquiry.
“The girl was put through the injustice again,” said Patil, according to NDTV. “It is wrong to use a victim, especially a minor victim, as bait.”
“The facts of the case are different,” Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis said on Sunday. “The Superintendent of Police will clarify soon."