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New York Police Commissioner James O'Neill apologizes for the battered rape in 1994; Victim "surprised"



NEW YORK – New York Police Chief James O'Neill apologized on Sunday to a woman who had rape allegations in 1994, but was discredited by the police. "In a letter O'Neill's wife offered his "heartfelt apology for all the slander thrown on her credibility by NYPD staff many years ago."

The woman, who is African-American, told the police in April 1994, that she had been to Prospect Park in Brooklyn when she was dragged into the bushes and raped.

She gave the authorities a detailed description that was the basis for a police sketch, and DNA evidence was found, but it came not to arrest.

A newspaper columnist, Mike McAlary of the Daily News, wrote at the time that police sources raised doubts about the woman by saying she had her story The woman sued McAlary for defamation, but one judge partially dismissed the case because McAlary relied on information from the police. McAlary died in 1

998.

The 52-year-old woman said on Sunday in an interview with the New York Times that she had been "surprised" by the apology.

"I wanted this to happen so that the NYPD would have to take a public stance to support the survivors, so that there would be a public statement that would make it clear that it is safe and beneficial for survivors Police, and that they would not be attacked or pilloried by the police, "she told The Times.

In January, police announced that the case had cracked that modern DNA analysis methods correspond to a man imprisoned for rape. He told the police he was not involved in the 1994 attack.

Few days after this announcement Another NYPD official apologized.

Deputy Commissioner John Miller sent a statement to the woman's lawyer saying that he was unjustly telling reporters that the police questioned the woman's account. He was the main spokesman for the police at the time.

In his letter of apology on Sunday, O'Neill said: "We know what harm sexual offenses inflict on survivors, the harm of insensitive comments and wild conspiracy theories further exacerbate the cruelty and injustice of the original crime itself I deeply and deeply. "

CBS News does not usually identify victims of sexual abuse.

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