The Criminal Becomes the Victim

Savvy lawyers, building a false narrative, can change the outcome of a trial. One way to affect the outcome is to change the perception of the accused from being the perpetrator to the victim. This garners sympathy for the accused perpetrator and simultaneously portrays the victim and the prosecution as evil and unjust. Masterfully used language changes the subject from the crime to the new victim (the accused) and the new villain (the plaintiff or victim). We have no problem seeing this twist of truth. It forces potential injustice.

When my wife and I were in college, my brother lived with us and we were visited by my mother in-law. Sometime after we went to bed, my brother woke me up saying a guy named Mark was sitting in the living room claiming he knew me.

The guy was a drunk stranger (football player for Washington State University) who just walked in my house and sat down. There was a kid-bar behind the apartments. He migrated from the bar, went up the stairs, opened our door and sat on the couch.

I was disturbed but not afraid. I tried to get him out of the house so he threatened to beat me up. I called the police and they took him away. I did not care what they did with the guy, I just wanted him out of my house.

The county court charged him and we all went to court. The crowd on his side of the courtroom glared at us like we did something to this guy. They found him innocent because he was too drunk to know what he was doing.

We were forced to go to court, mistreated, and he was found innocent. This was our first experience with the judicial system.

I know why people turn the tables. Their self-interest and desire to preserve themselves becomes so high that they are willing to commit another crime to cover it up.

In 2001, in Fort Worth, Texas, a woman struck a homeless guy with her car (she had been on drugs and alcohol). He was wedged in the windshield and couldn’t escape. She drove home and left him in the garage (still in the windshield) until he died.

Latter the woman had friends help her dispose of the his body. It was said, that she had been a nurse’s-aide and that he would have lived had he received medical attention. This merely shows the insane phenomenon of self-protection.

Friends and I help the homeless, youth and those in recovery. It is hard work to help someone reform their life. Almost always, when they are pressed on an issue they have an excuse and decide to leave accusing and spreading the news of what horrible people we are. I have even had them involve the authorities.

I wish it stopped with them but the church can be the same way. Similarly, a person is called out and an effort is made to help them and bring them to repentance (we want them in the church, to be fruitful, taking them at their word that they want to follow Christ). They often leave, breaking the stained glass windows of the relationship.

Last summer I was cutting a hay field. I looked down the highway and noticed a power cable had been knocked to the ground. I knew I had done it. I drove the tractor another 30 yards and I couldn’t handle it any longer, I knew I needed to face the consequences of my error.

I had just drove my truck through the drive way where the cable was down and I knew my load was real tall (my tractor was on the back of my trailer, about 13ft tall). I had been very careful watching wires over the 10 mile road I had just traveled. But I was sure it was me.

I walked slowly to my shame and the imminent consequences. I probably would have to pay for the repair. Not cheap!

To my surprise, a car was in the ditch right next to the driveway I had just navigated. He had driven through the power pole and knocked it down. The driver was fine. I was relieved.

It is hard to accept shame, justice, and punishment. It is natural to avoid the consequences. It is natural to want to make a lie or cover it up! It is hard to look at yourself and change.

Doing what is right almost always takes a lot of courage. It is right to admit what you have done and humbly accept the consequences (most of the time the consequences are simply humbling one self and taking responsibility).

This kind of defense requires no special training. Many people in everyday relationships use it. Maybe you use it. That needs to stop!


  1. I am finding out that what you have said is so true.!I was wrongfully medically neglect but yet the defense lawyers can outright lie ,bring up my past (which has nothing to do w/it) to make me out to be the bad person. I also got 5months house arrest alot of fines &fees for a crime I didnot due.It .There was absolutely no proof but because of Wa.laws…I did it because thats what the Judge said.But a 26 year old man can rape a 13 yr girl for continous time & threaten to kill her if she ever says anything,and get off scott free on it. Admitting you are wrong is better then carrying around the guilt inside of you I think.I know i am in need of correction just starting to grow in Christ.I would rather want the help & corrction then the other result ,which i have done my whole life. I enjoy reading and watching your teachings.Thank you

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s