Thursday, January 6, 2011

Prison For Incest in Nebraska

I have a follow-up to a story out of Nebraska. The spelling in the earlier post is Holloway, but this recent article has it as Halloway. Dennis Halloway has been sentenced to 10-20 in prison for an incest conviction. He claims his daughter seduced him.

Rowlands sentenced Halloway to no less than 10 and no more than 20 years in prison and ordered him to sign a sex offender registration form. Halloway was initially led to the back of the courtroom to wait out the remaining criminal cases before being taken to jail, but was called back up in front of Rowlands at the end of the session.

"It's my understanding that you are refusing a court order to sign the sex offender registration form," Rowlands asked Halloway.

Halloway said he would not sign the order and demanded the return of his lawyer, but Rowlands informed Halloway that he had already been convicted and no longer had that right. Rowlands told Halloway that if he did not sign the form, he would be in direct contempt of court.

Halloway relented, but said he would sign the form "under protest."

I wish the article would have contained information as to whether it was ever established that any of this took place when the daughter was a minor, or if it took place, as Halloway claimed before, when she was an adult. Also, if it only took place after she became an adult, if there was any force or coercion. Regardless, it is illegal, but I noticed the article calls this an “incest conviction,” and not a rape or molestation conviction. That may imply mutual consent. There is an enormous difference between consensual sex involving adults as compared to rape or child rape/molestation. The former should not be illegal.

So, with the information provided, I have no way of knowing if Dennis Halloway is a despicable child molester or rapist, or simply someone who got worked over by the system and an angry adult child manipulating it. Either way, something horrible has happened, and that's saddening. But what happened? This is one way we see how incest laws, as they are in most states in the US, are problematic. Rape, child molestation, and child/statutory rape are already illegal, as they should be. Incest should only be in criminal law to enhance a sentence for someone convicted of child molestation, child rape, or statutory rape. It should not be in the law to prohibit consenting adults from their rights to love, sex, and marriage.
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