The past couple of days, have echoed the arrest of Roman Polanski, in Switzerland. He was arrested as a fugitive on a U.S. warrant. I have listened and debated as to whether I should post my opinion on this matter, as it is definitely a "hot" button issue.
First...the majority of people voicing their wrath and wanting to see this now elderly man in jail, has bothered me. I have listened to barely 30 year old people (not even born when this act was perpetrated), and the majority of those plus the newscasters are all attacking this issue as if it were an event of today.
One has to realize how life was in the 70's. There was no social networking, the drug scene was rampant throughout the U.S., and the "free" movement was afoot. Please note now...I do not condone what happened to the young girl whatsoever. But the crime was dealt with, a plea deal was reached, and the judge, in wanting to make a name for himself - was going to defy the agreement and make an example of Polanski.
Since Polanski was a French citizen, he apparently felt he was being treated unfairly and fled to his homeland. France refused to extradite Polanski to the U.S. at that time and still refuses to this day.
The then 13 year old Samantha Geimer, was at the home of Jack Nicholson, for a photo shoot by Mr. Polanski for Vogue magazine. One has to question first - where was the mother and WHY did she feel she didn't need to be there with her daughter. There is some blame that needs to fall on her shoulders. And by the way...this "rape" happened on the second day of shooting, again without the mother. From the pictures taken of this girl at that time - I have to admit, she looked much older. But then again, I had young men hitting on me when I was 14, as I looked much older than my actual age. That is neither here nor there, Mr. Polanski should have kept his hands to himself.
What infuriates me, is this case was never tried, as a plea deal was made early on. Polanski was ordered to spend 90 days for a psychiatric evaluation, which he was released after 42 days - with the results being that he was deemed NOT to be a pedophile and had no mental issues.
Mr. Polanski's attorney and the prosecutor made an agreement, that was all but delivered, until Judge Rittenband CHANGED his mind and decided to set an example of Mr. Polanski and further his judicial record. (He was proven to be a corrupt judge in later years). He literally played to the cameras before, during and after this case.
No one has disputed the details from this documentary, until yesterday - when the prosecuting attorney at that time (David Wells), recanted his statement in the film. He had said that he had meetings with the judge (ex parte - without the defense being present) in strategizing the sentencing for Mr. Polanski. He now says that never happened, and he made the statement, with the belief that this film would not be aired in the United States. Something is wrong with that message, as he recants "yesterday", but the film aired over a year ago in this country. And he waited this long, why???
The judicial system at that time was proven to be very corrupt, and whether that has changed much to this day, I couldn't say. The victim has been saying for many years now, that she would like the case dismissed. She has no animus towards Polanski, and has learned to live with (not get over) what happened to her so many years ago. She has made the statement that SHE is the one suffering, as the press will not let this matter go away. I believe that she, as the victim, has to be given credence.
I have no sympathy for rapists whatsoever. But this matter happened over three decades in the past. His life has moved on, as well as the victim. He has done well with his life and career, as well as the victim and being an advocate. With this hanging over his head for all these years, I consider that punishment as well.
I think this is a waste of California taxpayer's money, at this point in time. And we know California has NO MONEY. I guarantee Mr.Polanski has the funds to fight this in foreign courts and has a cadre of supporters abroad. How will the citizens of California feel (as a whole) about spending exorbitant amounts of money, in a foreign country - to bring this man back to the states?
In my opinion, I feel Mr. Polanski has lived with this fear over his head for all these years. The victim too has had to have this matter rehashed in the media ad nauseum. When does it end? When will the victim have her closure? She has made it quite clear she does NOT want to see this man incarcerated. My belief is that her wishes should carry a great deal of weight in this matter.
So, yell at me all you want. I have had my say, and think I included all the valid points I intended. Have a great evening.
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