Wave of violence against young girls in Lithuanian town

The suspect in a brutal attack was not detained -- and then witnesses started receiving threats.

Daiva Repeckaite
Daiva Repeckaite NewsMavens, Lithuania
Wave of violence against young girls in Lithuanian town - NewsMavens
Woman walking on the street. Pixabay

Why this story matters:

The justice system of Lithuania, known for particularly harsh punishments for marijuana possession and graffiti, concluded that a suspect in the violent assault of an underage girl should walk free. According to some reports, this allowed him to attempt to influence witnesses.

This recent case illustrates the struggle to achieve justice for victims of gender-based violence.

There is still no justice in the case of the model who mysteriously died after partying with famous men, and we are not certain whether justice will prevail after a teenager was beaten to a pulp at a countryside party -- and the suspect happens to be local politician's son.

In late May, a group of teenagers rented a countryside house to celebrate the end of the school year. Some invited their older friends. Sources reported that when the victim disappeared outside, her friends went to look for her and found the suspect undressed, preparing to rape the victim in a pool of blood, while other sources say that he left the victim and went inside to join his friends.

There are reports that "suspicious cars" have been spotted near homes of the teenagers who have witnessed the crime. The teenagers have not reported any threats so far, but they feel intimidated. The suspect was initially allowed to continue going to school until prosecutors received reports that the suspect sent threats to the victim, and the suspect's family started contacting the victim's father. Now the suspect is under home arrest and faces from three to ten years for sexual assault.

A week before, a teenager was arrested for allegedly murdering his friend in the same town, Jurbarkas, and a teenage gang of 29, reportedly aged 13 to 14, recently attacked a local gym, trying to assault one of its teenage members.

Details from the story:

  • On May 26, the police got a report of an underage boy having beaten up an underage girl in an attempt to rape her at a party in the countryside.
  • As of early June, the girl is still spending her days in a hospital. Multiple bones of her face are broken and fractured. She suffers from broken nose and jaw and lost several front teeth.
  • The suspect trains in martial arts and has won prizes. His sports club has suspended him for now. He was arrested but promptly released and continues to attend school as if nothing happened. It has been reported that both parents of the suspect are local politicians.
  • Minister of Justice Elvinas Jankevičius promised free legal aid to the victim's family, but even without her complaint, witness testimonies and other evidence should be enough for prosecutors to take up the case.
  • Numerous people, including local celebrities, have raised funds for the girl's treatment and legal aid.

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NewsMavens is a media start-up within Gazeta Wyborcza, Poland's largest liberal broadsheet published by Agora S.A. NewsMavens is currently financed by Gazeta Wyborcza and Google DNI Fund.
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