Local Services member slams prosecutors’ handling of viral TikTok rape case

JACKSONVILLE, Florida. – A member of local services made his voice heard on social media earlier this week after accusing another serviceman of rape and blaming the military and criminal justice system for not taking strong enough action.

Staff Sgt. Kacie Suchanek said the sexual assault happened off base eight months ago in October. There was an arrest in December and the state’s attorney’s office is investigating. So far, no formal charges have been filed.

Frustrated with the prosecutor’s take on the case, Suchanek filed a complaint on TikTok where the video received more than 1.4 million views in five days.

“My name is Staff Sgt. Kacie Suchanek and today marks eight months since I was raped,” Suchanek said in the video. “I absolutely got it and I’m at my breaking point.I am currently being dismissed by both the military and the criminal justice system of Duval County, Florida, the Fourth Judicial Circuit.

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News4JAX caught up with Suchanek earlier this week. Suchanek said she had been in the military for five years.

“I’m an enlisted staff sergeant in E5 – I’m actually a medic with the 125th Medical Group,” Suchanek said.

She told News4JAX that the encounter with the suspect started out consensual.

A Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office arrest report obtained by News4JAX shows that she told police on Oct. 16 that she was raped on Oct. 11. Suchanek told police she and a friend were intoxicated when they arrived at the suspect’s home in Jacksonville that night. She said the suspect was “handy” with her when she arrived, then said she had had four drinks by the pool.

“He brought me to his room – I thought maybe we were going to kiss, and that’s when he got really violent with me. And he forced me to have sex oral and then continued to rape me,” she said. “I was telling him no. I was trying to push him away. He was probably almost a foot taller than me. He pinned me down. .my head, smothered in a pillow.

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She said afterwards they went to the living room, where their friends were listening to music. Then, she told police, he pulled her into the bedroom and raped her again.

“So he grabbed me around my throat and pushed me around the room and against a wall, and I just remember my head hitting the wall,” she said.

She told News4JAX she told her friend she had been raped when they got to the car to leave, along with two other friends, one of whom convinced her to make a kit. rape.

“I opened up to 11 hours of questioning, taking pictures, taking swabs, having to do a physical exam again…having to go through that, having to feel violated again,” she said.

According to the police report, “the victim suffered injuries consistent with this incident, as evidenced by the medical examination.”

Suchanek said the military sent her to Texas for three months of treatment earlier this year after she was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder. She said PTSD didn’t come from combat, but from sexual assault.

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“Before I started my treatment, I used to have flashbacks, god, like 20 times a day, maybe more,” she said.

Records show the man accused of sexual assault was arrested on two sexual assault charges in December. He was released on bail, placed under GPS surveillance, ordered to stay away from the victim, and banned from the use of alcohol and drugs. The police report also says the suspect gave victim impact statements to apologize, saying, “I caused you this trauma, and I have to live with it!” and “I’m so sorry, I know alcohol was involved and that’s no excuse.”

Suchanek said these statements were made during a phone call and recorded by a detective. So far, the prosecutor’s office has not requested a grand jury to indict the suspect and has not filed an official charging document with the court.

Suchanek said the state’s attorney is prepared to drop the case against the man who she says violently raped and beat her if she didn’t accept a plea deal for him on a lesser charge.

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“Prosecutors wanted me to accept a plea for a simple battery charge with ten months probation for not drinking alcohol against my rapist, but I didn’t like that,” she said. “I told them I didn’t accept that, so they said okay, we’ll drop the case.”

News4JAX asked, “Have they said why they want you to take this plea deal?

“No, they keep trying to tell me this is the best I’ll get,” Suchanek said. “They think the evidence I have is going to make it look like two consenting adults have gone too far.”

“If you went to trial and lost, would it still be worth it for you to go through that process?” News4JAX asked.

“I think it would be because I would be able to you know…there are so many cases that don’t even go that far, and there are so many men and women who can’t even show up to a trial and tell their story,” Suchanek said. “That’s how you create change. That’s how you know how to motivate others to talk about what happened to them.

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His TikTok is already starting conversations, with more than 13,500 comments.

“I wanted to pressure them to do better, to look twice, to think twice before ignoring a case, especially sexual assault cases,” he said. she stated.

Suchanek said he met with the director of the state attorney’s office’s special victims unit on Thursday, who told him he would reassess the evidence.

Suchanek said one of the reasons she feels abandoned by the military is that there are no military consequences for the suspect at this time. She said it’s because the suspect is a member of the National Guard, so the military doesn’t intervene when National Guard members aren’t on orders.

News4JAX contacted the state’s attorney’s office, who said, “We are unable to comment as this is still an active case and an active investigation.”

News4JAX has also contacted the suspect’s attorney and a military spokesperson. We are waiting for an answer.

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Useful numbers :

National Sexual Assault Hotline: 1-800-656-4673

National Domestic Violence Hotline: 800-799-7233

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