Rape claim brings arrest

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HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) – Police have arrested a 28-year-old Waterbury woman who had claimed she was raped by a black man in Bushnell Park, then recanted.

The woman was arrested Tuesday and brought to Superior Court from the state women’s prison in Niantic, where she is being held on charges of credit card theft, according to the state Department of Correction Web site.

Police said that the woman, who is white, claimed in November she had been raped near the park carousel by a heavyset black man with a gray beard. In response to the report, police beefed up patrols in the downtown park.

Police said that in December the woman admitted she made up the story about being attacked in the park. But she claimed she had been sexually assaulted by another man, an acquaintance, elsewhere.

Police and prosecutors have refused to name the woman, saying her identity should be protected by the state’s rape-shield law. Police said she has refused to cooperate in an investigation.

Police initially decided not to charge the woman with filing a false report because they still considered her a sexual assault victim. However, police reversed that decision earlier this month after leaders of the city’s black community, claiming her false story perpetuated harmful stereotypes, called for criminal charges.

Superior Court Judge Bradford Ward has set bond at $2,500 and the case was continued until Feb. 9.



Information from: The Hartford Courant, http://www.courant.com

AP-ES-01-24-07 0909EST

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