A Suffolk Superior Court judge is weighing whether to reveal the name of an alleged sexual assault victim at the center of a scandal involving former Senate President Stan Rosenberg and his husband, Bryon Hefner.
The attorney for the alleged victim in the case said he's never face a motion like this, and said revealing the victim's name would deter any victims from reporting crimes.
On the other end, attorneys for Hefner and Rosenberg want to change that in the civil case they're fighting, saying shielding the victim from scrutiny is unfair.
"What, if anything, does the plaintiff stand to gain professionally, politically or otherwise from making and pursuing these allegations?" an attorney said. "The public does not know that right now."
The victim's attorney, Mitch Garabedian, said the motion is preposterous, and said he's seen victims commit suicide after going public with accusations.
"My client right now is speaking out on behalf of victims everywhere, sexual abuse victims everywhere," Garabedian said. "He's sending a message that he is going to be proud and strong and all victims should step forward."
Attorneys for Hefner and Rosenberg say keeping the victim's name sealed gives the victim the upper hand in a case that's not yet proven, and people seeing reports in the media may provide them with additional information.
"They have the benefit of that media coverage with the names and whatever information might flow to them as a result," the attorney said. "We do not."
Garabedian said the sides were uneven from the start, but not because of the names.
"In terms of a level-playing field, long before we filed this lawsuit, the reputations of the defendants were tarnished," Garabedian said.
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