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The Grace Millane Sex Game Gone Wrong Defence

What do you expect as an illustration of rape?

The killer of Grace Millane has been found guilty of her murder. Therefore the attempted defence of his actions must be stopped.


But that is the demand here:

The killer of British backpacker Grace Millane has been sentenced to life in prison in New Zealand. Millane’s mother, Gillian, told her daughter’s killer: “You have taken my daughter’s future and robbed us of so many memories that we were going to create.”

The horrific murder of Millane, who met her killer (who cannot be named for legal reasons) on a Tinder date, has focused attention on the increasing use of the “sex game gone wrong” defence by men who kill women. It’s a defence that can only be described as victim-blaming taken to its most grotesque extreme. Here we have increasing numbers of men blaming women for the fatal violence committed against them, suggesting women can somehow consent to their own deaths (which is legally impossible) while claiming they themselves cannot be held responsible. It’s time the use of this defence stopped – for good.

We must ban something that doesn’t work?

Mutterings about female logic are appropriate here.

The thing being, well, yes, sex games do sometimes go wrong. As Stephen Milligan and David Carradine – or their ghosts – can tell us. At a rate of about half a death per million inhabitants in fact and that’s just autoerotic asphyxiation.

So, death during sex. Sure, the presumption is going to be violence, thus murder to manslaughter by the survivor(s). But that’s what trials are about – testing presumptions. Otherwise every dead domestic partner would see t’other one banged up because that’s the way it generally works out. Stranger murder, certainly for women, is the rarity not the norm. Trials are how we work out whether we should just go with the flow or summat else happened.

Which does rather mean that peeps get to use any argument they like in their own defence. After all, sometimes the CIA really does kill people. There are recorded instances of people being strangled by their bedclothes. Sex games do sometimes go wrong.

The question is always does the jury believe this explanation in this particular instance.

And, to go back to that female logic thing again, that they jury didn’t ain’t a good reason for no one eve being allowed to use that argument ever again.

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4 years ago

So the big issue the Guardian is getting upset about here is the defence the murderer used? Youd have thought the murder he committed was the thing?

Chester Draws
Chester Draws
4 years ago

the increasing use of the “sex game gone wrong” defence [citation required].

The defence only had a chance in this case because Millane was into some odd stuff. That her mother doesn’t like that, doesn’t mean it isn’t true.

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