A Tennessee woman says she was raped by a man but the charges against him were dropped because he claimed he thought she "was someone else".
Amy Dewland told Fox 17 News that the District Attorney's Office in Davidson Country chose not to prosecute the man because they said they could not prove he "knowingly assaulted her".
"The decision is just as bad as the actual rape, that's what it feels like," Dewland told the news station.
She says the man crawled into the bed she fell asleep in after a party and sexually assaulted her. According to the woman, he later claimed he was drunk and thought she was another woman, who he had a sexual relationship with.
"It shouldn't matter, because the bottom line is, there was no consent given. So it doesn't matter who he thinks he's touching, there was still no consent to it," Dewland said.
An email from the District Attorney's Office to the victim explains why they decided to close the case without any charges being laid.
"The State believes there is evidence that a sexual encounter occurred between the parties. However, the circumstances surrounding the incident are at issue. Based on the facts above, it appears that Crimmons would testify that he thought he was touching Jessica who he was in a casual sexual relationship with at the time. Further, Jessica would testify that she would not have been uncomfortable with this given their relationship. It seems mistake of fact as a defense could be asserted," Special Victim's unit Detective Richard Hyatt explained in an email sent to Dewland, published by Fox 17 News.
"Mistake of fact is a defense to prosecution if such mistake negates the culpable mental state of the charged offense. Based on the totality of the facts and circumstances, the consensus of multiple assistant district attorney's is that there is NOT sufficient evidence to prosecute for Rape 'beyond a reasonable doubt.' Therefore, prosecution is not recommended at this time. Should additional evidence present itself, this matter may be revisited."
Dewland says she wants people to know authorities are letting the man get away from his crime without consequences because they deemed the rape "a drunken mistake".
A spokesperson for the DA's office says they are looking into the case.
The incident happened 10 months ago and Dewland says fighting for charges has been emotionally and mentally exhausting.
"It's just so ridiculous, it's like flabbergasting that that is, he was drunk it's fine, it's such a joke, and it's a really scary precedent to set you, you know?"