Apr 13, 2016

Forcible rape or consensual sex? The case that has torn the community of Petrolia apart

Both, the People's and defense supporting witnesses in the Meserve case were fairly credible.

It will all come down to who the six men and six women believe; and believe more.

Jane Doe #1 or Jane Doe #2 or both? Or do they believe Kailan Meserve?

Was it forced rape or consensual sex?

It's not a simple "he said, she said" situation.

Nothing that Kailan Meserve said or his witnesses said impeached Jane Doe #1 or Jane Doe #2. Mr. Clanton tried in his questioning of DA Investigator Kyla Baxley to create doubt, tried being the operative word.

The People's witnesses, particularly Asheigh Groeling, supported Jane Doe #2. This is someone who considers Kailan Meserve a brother. Her testimony was very crucial to me when it came to other witnesses.

Watching Ashley Groeling testify was hard. With her, you could see how the small community of Petrolia has been affected by this case.

The jury in this case won't hear about Kailan Meserve's DUI charges in 2013. They also won't hear that he was a volunteer for the Petrolia Fire Department at that time. Is the fact that alcohol was a major factor in that crash and Meserve had to be rescued by the Fire Department relevant information? His passenger was his wife, Monica Meserve, who sustained injuries according to this TS article.


http://www.times-standard.com/general-news/20080921/two-injured-in-petrolia-crash

The same wife that had to suffer humiliation publicly and testify in court about him cheating on her, a fact he also testified to.

The defense did bring up in the opening statement that Meserve was an alcoholic and sought sex outside his marriage "at that time."

How many people accused of alleged sexual assault or rape have a two million dollar bail and have their friend and defense witness Jeff Groeling put up their property for bail because bail had to be paid by "legitimate means?"

And can afford not one, but two, high priced attorneys and a private defense investigator.

Will the jury, particularly the men, just think well...maybe too much alcohol and sex regretted by both parties?

They should remember the demeanor of the two women. They acted, spoke and reacted like rape victims. They did not back pedal on their testimony.

Kailan Meserve admitted he lied to his wife, admitted he did not have any prior sexual relationship with either woman. What was most telling was that he left Jane Doe #1 to throw up after, according to him, they kissed and fondled. What a gentleman.

Regarding Jane Doe #2, " the more she drank, the more she fit in." These are his words.

His response that he did not discuss having sex with Jane Doe #1, he discussed employment, then saying, "It was obvious why we were there" shows not only his immense ego but an attitude if you work for me, servicing me is part of the employment.

Certainly, not the first man guilty of that, certainly not the first guy growing marijuana to do that; but is he a man the men on the Meserve jury would be comfortable having their wife, sister, daughter around?

No evidence of Jane Doe #1 or Jane Doe #2 lying. Before the trial, I had an opinion but gave him the benefit of doubt. After listening to both parties,  I do not believe him.

Cosensual sex is a hard sell in this case.

What is obvious is the same boring sexual repertoire on Meserve's part.  I have strong disdain about men who cheat on their wives and take advantage of other women.

Then try to spin it as consensual sex.

When certain growers in this area and the lawyers who repeatedly represent them give up the "perks" they get, maybe defendants will get a good defense without alleged rape victims being put through the wringer.

In the previous administration, a plea deal would most likely have been struck. Especially with lawyers buddy buddy with the former DA.

At least with this new DA, women in Humboldt County have a chance to be heard.

And before you wanna be critics and commenters jump all over me, remember my coverage includes all the nuances of the Courthouse and this opinion is based on evidence heard in court.


I don't sit behind a computer all day. Where is the rest of your media coverage, on the Cook case, on the Brown case, on this case? Said it before, will say it again, whether it is the courts, politics, or any other news, most media management in this town needs to provide public information, not glorified press releases, selected by the people they cover.

How many of you men actually stand up for women survivors in life? Men should hold other men accountable in a civilized society.


There are defense lawyers who are not happy that court coverage has increased, particularly me covering the courts. Trust me, they haven't made it easy.

Why, because I know the inside tricks and their background; I am not intimidated and I will write the story they don't want out in public.


This case is more than just about alleged rape. It is about the culture in Humboldt that needs to change.









3 comments:

  1. Thanks again for covering this. I don't know the particulars of exactly what the victims claim happened, but i'll go with your impression that it was not consensual, despite the fact they were under the influence. I re-read your Aug 20 post in which you detail the alleged assaults, it was helpful. Though JD #1 was found by friends in the bathroom with her pants around her ankles and couldn't remember anything? Yet, she then seeks out Meserve and wanted a ride by him? Strange. Your post says her friends had to tell her what happened; yet, they let her go off with Meserve?

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  2. Tall Trees, read Jane Doe #1's testimony from the trial recently or wait for closing arguments today. It will answer your question, hopefully.

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  3. Somehow I had missed that entry, but I found it. Thanks.

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