Sexual assault victim ordered to undergo competency hearing

Published: May. 6, 2015 at 2:54 AM EDT|Updated: May. 7, 2015 at 12:04 AM EDT
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LIBERTY TOWNSHIP, OH (FOX19) - A local woman who says she's a sexual assault victim is waging a battle much bigger than that in court.

Dani Brewer was working a new job for about a month when she says her employer assaulted her. As the legal process has progressed, she's been ordered to undergo a competency hearing, something that she and her representatives from the Justice League of Ohio believe to be unfair.

They're afraid a hearing like this could set a precedent in these types of cases that may do more harm than good.

Brewer started a new job last October working as a branch manager and human resources in a new office. In the very next month, she says, things changed.

"He was a family friend, and my employer, and he sexually assaulted me," said Brewer.

Brewer reported the incident late last year that has yet to go to trial. But, the case has taken, what she sees as, an unusual turn.

"It's really ridiculous that it's being required of me. It's insulting. It's invasive. It's upsetting, and I feel like I'm on trial," Brewer told FOX19 NOW.

She's been ordered to undergo a competency hearing this week.

"It makes no sense. I am obviously competent. I was competent when he hired me to run the office, and do the human resources and do the payroll," she said.

Brewer has enlisted the help of The Justice League of Ohio, a group fighting for victim's rights. To them, the request of the court is nothing short of perplexing.

"Generally speaking, all adults are presumed competent. This is not an issue that you see raised very often," said Elizabeth Well, Legal Services Director with the Justice League of Ohio.

Elizabeth Well says she only found a few cases in Ohio like Brewer's where a similar motion was filed but, she says, none were ever granted like this.

"We certainly don't want this to go forward. We don't want Dani to go through it. We also don't want it to set a dangerous precedent for other victims," Well said by phone on Tuesday.

Well has filed a motion with the court asking the judge to keep the hearing from happening.

"My fear is that, in the future, not just women, but victims of crime - any crime - may be fearful to come forward," Brewer said.

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