WHAT RAPE CULTURE??? Despite DNA, the Rapist Got Away
After Cook County took over the evidence room in Robbins, Natasha’s case was handled by Cara Smith of the sheriff’s office. A onetime competitive swimmer, Smith says she was haunted by Natasha’s suffering and terror of water. “I was consumed with the notion that had this violent assault occurred where I grew up in Oak Park, or a few miles north in the City of Chicago, it would have been solved,” Smith says.
Although Natasha’s kit drew a match, the statute of limitations had expired, and Carl F. was never prosecuted. I tried to reach him to ask how he explained the DNA matches — and to see if he remembered the alleged assault on Natasha — but he doesn’t appear to have a fixed address, the authorities are unaware of his location, and I couldn’t track him down.
As for Natasha, she is still living with the trauma of it all, including the authorities’ reluctance to investigate. “It affects me to this day,” she told me, crying softly. “It’s hard. It’s very hard.”
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