From the cases presented in the four articles, it can be concluded that the victims fit the ideal victim. To begin with, an ideal victim can be defined as a person who does not participate in making himself or herself susceptible to the crime that is committed against him or her. Thus, the people who are portrayed as ideal victims are innocent, defenceless, and vulnerable. This implies that they deserve compassion and sympathy.
The articles present the victims in different ways, with all articles; the two articles from news.com and the article from the Kansas City Star, as well as the one from The Daily Telegraph depicting the victims as ideal victims, on the one hand, and just victims, on the other hand. According to “Jocks, cops and politics: Behind the Maryville rape case that left Daisy Coleman and Paige Parkhurst seeking justice, 2013”, the victims aged 14 and 13 (minors) were engaged in an illegal act of drinking before being taken to a secret party.
Therefore, they lose the aspect of innocence that is critical in portraying a victim as being an ideal victim, especially in a rape case. What makes the victims deserve sympathy, in this case, is that the suspected rapists came from privileged families and could have influenced the determination of the case, thereby obstructing the quest for justice by the victims’ families.
According to Helling and Arnett, the victims’ families in the case argued that there was political favouritism in the case that resulted in the dropping of the case. Favouritism was depicted by the nature and the social status of the families the suspects came from. Here, the not-so highs social status of the families from which the victims come from works negatively for the victims; thus, the victims deserve sympathy and compassion from the public. Unlike the suspects who came from prominent families, the victims came from families that were not prominent. Thence, they could not easily influence the case.
The public attention captured by the story invited a further probe into the case. Further, the decision of Robert Rice (Nowaday County Prosecutor), who dismissed the case, was questioned by a substantial number of people in Missouri. Similar concerns about favouritism and political interference in the case were echoed by Zucchino and Pearce, as a result of which the case was reopened. Moreover, they also noted that the accused have gone silent, unlike the victims who have publicly gone out to claim justice. According to “Maryville, Missouri, struggles to come to grips with a rape scandal that has circled the world 2013”, there was a plot to cover up the rape scandal. Unfortunately, the manner in which the case was conducted has already caught the attention of the public. Also, a public protest has been mobilised to show resentment in the manner the case was handled and push for the victims’ justice.