A False Report by T. Christian Miller
A True Story of Rape in America

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Their urgent account delivers absolute vindication in a serpentine crime investigation that initially betrayed its victim. A riveting and disturbing true-crime story that reflects the enduring atrocity of rape in America.
-Kirkus

Synopsis

Two Pulitzer Prize-winning journalists tell the riveting true story of Marie, a teenager who was charged with lying about having been raped, and the detectives who followed a winding path to arrive at the truth.

On August 11, 2008, eighteen-year-old Marie reported that a masked man broke into her apartment near Seattle, Washington, and raped her. Within days police and even those closest to Marie became suspicious of her story. The police swiftly pivoted and began investigating Marie. Confronted with inconsistencies in her story and the doubts of others, Marie broke down and said her story was a lie—a bid for attention. Police charged Marie with false reporting, and she was branded a liar.

More than two years later, Colorado detective Stacy Galbraith was assigned to investigate a case of sexual assault. Describing the crime to her husband that night, Galbraith learned that the case bore an eerie resemblance to a rape that had taken place months earlier in a nearby town. She joined forces with the detective on that case, Edna Hendershot, and the two soon discovered they were dealing with a serial rapist: a man who photographed his victims, threatening to release the images online, and whose calculated steps to erase all physical evidence suggested he might be a soldier or a cop. Through meticulous police work the detectives would eventually connect the rapist to other attacks in Colorado—and beyond.

Based on investigative files and extensive interviews with the principals, A False Report is a serpentine tale of doubt, lies, and a hunt for justice, unveiling the disturbing truth of how sexual assault is investigated today—and the long history of skepticism toward rape victims.
 

About T. Christian Miller

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T. Christian Miller is an investigative reporter who writes for the Los Angeles Times' Washington bureau. In his career as a professional journalist, he has covered four wars and a presidential campaign, and has reported from more than two dozen countries. He is a graduate of the University of California at Berkeley and lives in Washington, D.C. with his wife and two children.
 
Published February 6, 2018 by Crown. 304 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs. Non-fiction
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Critic reviews for A False Report
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Kirkus

Good
on Nov 22 2017

Their urgent account delivers absolute vindication in a serpentine crime investigation that initially betrayed its victim. A riveting and disturbing true-crime story that reflects the enduring atrocity of rape in America.

Read Full Review of A False Report: A True Story ... | See more reviews from Kirkus

NY Times

Above average
Reviewed by Emily Bazelon on Mar 06 2018

Miller and Armstrong interviewed O’Leary in prison but it seems, understandably, as if it was hard for them to get into his head. In recreated flashbacks that rely on phrases like “the beast wouldn’t rest” and “the monster would gather strength,” the authors show him stalking women and breaking into their homes by night.

Read Full Review of A False Report: A True Story ... | See more reviews from NY Times

Reader Rating for A False Report
75%

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