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One can only assume De Coutere was thinking of some sort of impenetrable fortress being constructed by dozens of women coming forward, and not an actual Jenga Tower—which is a construction of interlocking wooden blocks vulnerable to collapse when one of its pieces is removed.
That’s certainly what the court watched today as defence lawyer Marie Henein handily dismantled the witness’s testimony, plucking away at so many loose pieces that it was easy to lose track.
This in turn gave rise to concerns that the witness defied court rules, and listened to media coverage, which made her realize the defence was ready to clobber her for statements left unreported, emails unmentioned.
Though less resilient on the stand than the previous two witnesses (the judge called a 20-minute break at one point so she could collect herself), echoes of previous testimony reverberated.
” Ghomeshi called the day after, and she spoke with him, the witness testified. During her cross-examination, Henein plucked the blocks out one by one, dismantling the narrative structure.
She also told the court they had contact in later years; she’d emailed him with an invitation to see musical acts she was managing. The witness’s report to police was used to undermine her credibility: “You tell police: ‘He was a creep, I always felt unsafe around him,’ ” Henein charged before discussing their sexual encounter.
We are renowned for teaching excellence across our faculties and have established ourselves as a growing force in research.
Kingston University is the largest provider of higher education in south-west London.If there was any grace to be found in the demolition derby that marked day five of the Jian Ghomeshi sexual assault trial, it was that the testimony of a third complainant provided an evocative metaphor that described both the day’s wreckage and how sexual assault cases can self-immolate: “Jenga tower.” That was the phrase Lucy De Couture, complainant number two, used to encourage the third and final witness to come forward and report to police in December 2014.“Your statement will be part of a Jenga tower,” De Coutere wrote in one of roughly 5,000 messages exchanged between the two women between October 2014 and September 2015.The witness’s relationship with Ghomeshi was short-term; the alleged incident was sudden, unexpected and seemed out of character; she tried to find ways to justify the behaviour. “I’m notoriously known for given people second, third and fourth chances,” the witness boasted, as if this was a womanly good thing.In an often-wavering voice, the witness, whose identity is protected by publication ban, said she knew Ghomeshi from the Canadian arts community for years before they met more personally in July 2003 when she performed in a festival in a Toronto park.
Here, though, bigger social messaging is required: that one must tell police everything, even if it’s embarrassing, even if it the complainant doesn’t fit the textbook victim mould; that there’s no such thing as a predictable response; that there’s no place for shame.