FixedIt: Love does not cause sexual assault

The Courier Mail reported that Melvin Hayes Aleke, 39, pleaded guilty to sexual assault, stalking, public nuisance and some property crimes. In the space of two and a half hours he assaulted, stalked and harassed seven different women.

He stalked a 17 year old girl, driving next to her as she was walking along the footpath and demanding she get into his car. After she refused several times he said “bitch, get in the car”, continued following her, swearing at her and talking about how pretty she was. She was in fear for her life.

He went to a park and touched a 60 year old woman after she had told him to leave her alone.

He drove up behind a 74 year old woman and demanded she get in the car and touch him sexually.

He asked a 63 year old woman out jogging to get in his car .

He propositioned a 30-year-old woman who was wheeling her two year old son in a pram.

He propositioned a 46-year-old woman who was walking to work, beeping his horn at her and asking her to get into the car. When she said no, Aleke yelled at her and sped off.

He harassed a 27-year-old woman waiting outside Redcliffe State High School at 9am. He pulled up beside her in his car and stared at her, telling her he liked her hair and tattoos and asked her to get into his car. She refused and he persisted.

The Courier Mail described him as “heartbroken” and “lovesick”.

Heartbreak can cause some weird behaviour. Lying in bed crying. Eating too much ice cream. Sobbing all over patient friends. Feeling sad and hurt and terrible. But it is does not cause sexual assault. And it is not a reason to be sympathetic to a man who assaults and harasses women.

Sexual violence – and all these acts were violent – is a choice. Aleke chose to commit these acts of violence. Nothing but his choices made him do it.

FixedIt is an ongoing project to push back against the media’s constant erasure of violent men and blaming of innocent victims. If you would like to help fund it – even $5 a month makes a big difference – please consider becoming a Patron


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