The charges against Michael Rasmussen exist for one reason, and one reason only: His oldest daughter, Apryl, was furious that he married a woman who had children, and he was giving attention to them instead of her. That is correct; this is a case that has its roots in pure jealousy and revenge.
Apryl came from a previous marriage, and over the years, as friends have told us, she and her mother pretty much got what they wanted from Michael. After the divorce, Apryl lived with her father, who adored her. As Michael's wife, Becky, has told me, he had pictures of her all over the house.
Michael and Becky lived with each other for several years before they agreed to marry, and that is when the trouble started. As is going to be revealed in court, Apryl told a number of people that she would not stand for her father paying attention to other children, and that he needed to understand that point.
So, she made accusations of child molestation against him. Unfortunately for her, when she was 10 years old, she had been questioned by a forensic psychologist about allegations of child molestation and she vehemently denied any sort of thing. Yet, in the phone conversation with her father (which will be covered in a future post), she tells him that she always has remembered his alleged molestation.
There are other things as well that are going to come out in the trial, and they are not going to bode well for the prosecution or the police. As I have written before, I believe that the police really don't believe that Mr. Rasmussen is guilty of anything, but that they have committed to this case and really don't care if their lies destroy another man's life. It has come to that.
Frank R. Stockton in 1882 published a story in The Century called "The Lady or the Tiger?" in which a commoner has a love affair with the king's daughter. He is arrested, and his "trial" takes place in an arena where there are two doors.
Behind one door is a beautiful lady who immediately would be given to the man as his wife. However, what is waiting behind the other door is a ferocious tiger. Before he chooses, he looks at the princess, who signals what door he is to open, and he opens it.
Stockton ends the story with the question of which door he chooses. In the case of Michael Rasmussen, it is clear that Apryl has chosen the tiger. In her view, if she cannot have him fully to herself, then neither Becky nor her children can have him at all. It is that simple, and it is that awful. If it means destroying her own father in order to get at Becky, then so be it.
I am not making up the attitudes. As the prosecution is going to be finding out in the trial scheduled for next week, Apryl has talked to a lot of people and she has spoken her mind on this subject. Furthermore, I have serious doubts that she will be a good prosecution witness. Moreover, she also asked for a restraining order against her father, claiming that she had "just remembered" that he tried to kill her by running over her in a car and that he had savagely beaten her mother. The judge seemed skeptical, and I suspect that her "recovered memory" here is not going to help her in court.
Once upon a time in America, pre-Mondale Act and all of the horror that has accompanied it, police and prosecutors would not have taken long to be onto Apryl's scheme and told her to take a hike. Unfortunately, police departments today are full of people like Kim Selkirk, who claim to see child molesters behind every bush and tree, and the lure of federal money for these cases has proven to be enough to break down the truth.
There is much more to this case that makes it abominable. And I will cover what I can in future posts.