Man convicted of raping woman he met through dating website

August 10, 2018 - 12:45 pm

A Missouri man has been convicted of raping a woman he met on a dating website.

A Platte County jury deliberated less than two hours before finding 31-year-old Bradley Everhart, of Independence, guilty of rape.

Prosecutors said the 31-year-old woman met Everhart on the dating website Plenty of Fish. She went to his home in August 2016 and they watched a movie in a bedroom.

The women told police Everhart raped her despite her repeatedly telling him to stop. The woman fled the house, went to a hospital, and reported the encounter to police.

Platte County Prosecuting Attorney Eric Zahnd said, “The jury in this case sent the message that ‘No’ really does mean ‘No.’  Meeting someone on a dating website, going to their home, and watching a movie clearly does notgive anyone the right to force sex upon that person.”

Zahnd said after woman left, Everhart sent her more than 60 text messages in less than an hour. He repeatedly apologized and asked her not to say anything because he would lose his children.

Zahnd said the defense attorney tried to shift the blame to the victim, asking the jury to consider the clothes she was wearing and her intentions for driving to the house.  He suggested the woman did not fight back hard enough, because she did not try to “scratch the defendant’s eyes out” and had no apparent signs of bruising. 

Julie Donelon, the President and CEO of MOCSA, the Metropolitan Organization to Counter Sexual Assault, said, “It is never appropriate to blame the victim.  It silences victims of sexual violence and keeps perpetrators from being held accountable. This verdict sends a clear message to survivors that when they report they will be believed and supported, and perpetrators will be held accountable.”

(The Associated Press contributed to this report)



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