Seattle Rape Survivor Gets Ugly Liberal Backlash After Describing Her Attacker


When an alleged Seattle rape survivor shared her harrowing story, the reaction from the left was a bit less than civil — all because of the fact that the accused rapist was a homeless man.

The story originally made headlines last year, when a man named Christopher Teel was accused of raping a woman in the bathroom of a Seattle Volkswagen dealership.

KOMO-TV reported that the accuser claimed Teel followed her into the dealership’s restroom in on May 14, 2018, locked the door, then forced open the stall and forced her out.

Teel allegedly told the victim, “you want this, God wants this.” He has not pleaded guilty to the charges of rape and unlawful imprisonment, but KCPQ-TV has reported court documents indicate he’s admitted to having committed the rape. He goes on trial this month.

Recently, the alleged victim contacted Seattle City Journal contributing editor Christopher Rufo about shooting a video regarding the crime.

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Rufo has reported extensively on Seattle’s homeless problem and, as he notes, Teel “had arrived from Texas as a transient and was evading multiple warrants, but the city-sanctioned encampment welcomed him without conducting a criminal-background check.”

“Nearly a year later, the victim, Lindsey, contacted me. After being raped, she had approached city leaders and met with the sitting councilman for nearly an hour but was received, she says, with dismissiveness,” Rufo wrote in a piece for City Journal published last week.

“Teel’s crime against her did not fit the preferred narrative of compassion for the homeless, so the political class downplayed it,” Rufo wrote. “By the time Lindsey reached out to me, she was ready to speak out.

“Lindsey asked me to create a short documentary so that she could tell her story in her own words. I’ve worked for more than a decade as a documentary filmmaker, but my interview with Lindsey was one of the most wrenching I’ve ever done.

“She walked me through the details of the attack and her deep frustrations with the political leadership that created the conditions for the crime to occur and then resisted making changes even after her story broke.”

The interview is difficult to watch. We warn you, graphic material ahead. Viewer discretion is advised.

“I arrived a few minutes early to my appointment that morning,” Lindsey says in the video. “I went up the ramp into the women’s restroom. I was in there I would say no longer than about 15 or 20 seconds before I heard the restroom door open.”

“He grabbed me by my throat and my shoulder and he threw me down on the ground in front of the handicapped stall and we fought for several minutes,” she continued.

She also talked about her frustration with how city officials handled the alleged crime and how they’ve handled the homelessness issue in general.

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“I think we need to all acknowledge what we’re doing isn’t working — what we’re doing right now is actually harming the city,” she said. “And we need stronger leaders. And strong leaders, in my opinion, are out there.”

The video made an immediate impact, Rufo wrote.

“We edited the film together and posted it to Facebook on April 22. That evening, it was the lead story on all four local Seattle news networks and had reached more than 35,000 people on social media,” he wrote. “The public renewed its call for warrant checks at city-sanctioned encampments. Seattle mayor Jenny Durkan condemned the assault and commended ‘the courage of a survivor of sexual violence to speak out.’”

Not everyone was supportive, however, as Rufo noted, and the liberal backlash was ugly.

One of the critics was local journalist Erica Barnett.

Barnett would note that Rufo is a conservative activist — which is true, but she’s also a liberal activist and what we’re discussing here is the story of a sexual assault survivor.

The idea that it shouldn’t be reported because it might reflect badly upon the homeless or because it might be triggering for rape survivors is, well, patently absurd. (She also managed to work Trump into her thread, too, because why not?)

Seattle Councilmember M. Lorena González echoed the idea that this wasn’t newsworthy.

Rufo, however, had no problem describing what the rape story illustrates:

“The reality: city-sanctioned encampments in Seattle have become magnets for crime and violence. According to the Seattle Times, when the city opened a low-barrier encampment in Licton Springs, the police recorded a 221 percent increase in reported crimes and public disturbances,” he wrote.

“Neighbors witnessed a dramatic rise in property destruction, violence, prostitution, and drug dealing in the area. According to King County Jail statistics, homeless individuals are 38 times more likely to commit crimes than the average citizen (the homeless represented 0.5 percent of the population but 19 percent of jail bookings last year).

Does this case show how hypocritical liberals are?

“Seattle’s activist class seems, then, to have more compassion for transient criminals than for the victims of their crimes. Lindsey’s story should be a clarion call for everyone who cares about violence against women,” he added.

“But in the tortured logic of intersectionality, the story of a homeless rapist demands ‘context,’ while the white, blonde, middle-class target of his assault is an unsympathetic victim.”

The stories of the havoc that swelling homeless populations are causing in liberal cities have become all too commonplace. Yet liberals insist the homeless are victims of some kind — even at a time when the country’s economy is providing more jobs than there are workers to fill them.

Meanwhile, liberals hector endlessly about the need to believe any woman who comes forward with a report about a sexual assault (even if there’s no evidence).

Yet when the sexual assault allegation involves a woman and a homeless man, the politics of liberal victimhood clash in their own contradictions.

Apparently, the love and support that the left provides to victims of sexual assault only goes so far.

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C. Douglas Golden is a writer who splits his time between the United States and Southeast Asia. Specializing in political commentary and world affairs, he's written for Conservative Tribune and The Western Journal since 2014.
C. Douglas Golden is a writer who splits his time between the United States and Southeast Asia. Specializing in political commentary and world affairs, he's written for Conservative Tribune and The Western Journal since 2014. Aside from politics, he enjoys spending time with his wife, literature (especially British comic novels and modern Japanese lit), indie rock, coffee, Formula One and football (of both American and world varieties).
Morristown, New Jersey
Catholic University of America
Languages Spoken
English, Spanish
Topics of Expertise
American Politics, World Politics, Culture