A young woman has taken her own life because after she was allegedly raped school officials and cops treated her ‘as if it were her fault’.
Megan Rodini was an honors student at the University of Alabama when the incident happened.
Terry Bunn Jr. was the man she accused of raping her. He is part of a very wealthy family in Alabama.
Parents of Megan, Michael and Cindy Rondini (TX), have filed a federal wrongful death lawsuit. The suite claims that the rape and Alabama officials’ screw up of the case led their daughter to commit suicide in February of 2016.
Speaking to CBS News this week, Megan’s parents said their late daughter felt betrayed by those who she believed were supposed to be on her side.
‘She’s like, “Mom, they think it’s my fault,”‘ Cindy Rondini tearfully said. ‘Like, “It’s not your fault baby, it’s not.”‘
After learning of the alleged rape, Cindy Rondini drove from the family’s home in Austin to Alabama to support her daughter. ‘It was the most heart-breaking moment of my life,’ the mother recalled as she wept.
The parents’ federal complaint discloses that Megan, at the time a junior planning to go to medical school, met 34yr-old Terry ‘Sweet T’ Bunn, at a popular local bar in July of 2015.
Terry’s family runs a large construction business in Tuscaloosa, AL.
In the suit, it is stated after Megan met Terry, she was later sexually assaulted at his home. They make the case that she was possibly drugged.
However, officers who were investigating the case were sympathetic to Terry, the lawsuit claims. Rather than focusing on if Megan was actually raped, they diverted their attention to the fact she took Terry’s handgun and $3 from his wallet to cab fare from his home.
‘Megan ultimately was treated as a crime suspect and her status as a victim of a sex crime was completely disregarded,’ the suit said.
In her initial interview with the police, which took place just hours after the alleged rape and was videotaped, the young woman told officers: ‘I had already said like I needed to leave, and he just wasn’t really responding to that.’
‘I feel like I wanna like throw up,’ she also said.
After being asked about the $3 and the handgun, Megan says in the recording: ‘I’m really sorry, like, I didn’t, I just…’
To which one of the detectives responds: ‘I told you we just gotta touch base on everything.’
Megan’s father, Michael Rondini, said at that moment in his daughter’s interview the family ‘started to learn that this wasn’t going like a normal investigation.’
Bunn’s interview with the local police was also recorded on video. In it, the 34-year-old suspect could be heard telling the cops: ‘I appreciate y’all’s professionalism. And I appreciate the way y’all have handled this.’
An investigator replies: ‘If it was me on the other side, I’d want to do the same thing for me.’
When Megan sought counselling from the university, the first therapist who was assigned to treat her had to drop her case because she personally knew Terry Bunn Jr.
Mom Cindy said after the alleged rape, her daughter no longer felt safe on campus and would call her parents to tell them she was afraid.
Megan ultimately withdrew from Alabama and returned home to Texas, where her mental condition deteriorated, according to the complaint.
Bunn was not charged for the alleged rape of Megan.
Megan told investigators that on July 1 she went to Innisfree Irish Pub for trivia night with a group of sorority sisters. She saw Bunn there and had seen him before but they only had spoken once.
She blacked out and came to in Bunn’s Mercedes.
Megan said she was so intimidated by Bunn that she didn’t try to stop him as he drove toward his house.
She then said Bunn told her to go to his room and she complied, sitting on a couch near the door, as far as possible from his bed and – when he came in – he told her he wanted to have sex.
At this time Megan stated she had to leave, while ‘trying to be really nice to him’ because ‘I know he’s an influential person in Tuscaloosa’.
‘I said, I really need to go, I have friends that are waiting,’ she reported to police during their first interview with her at the hospital. ‘He didn’t really take that.’
Eventually, Megan said, she ‘felt like just letting him have sex with me was the only way he would let me go’.
According to investigators, Megan was able to escape his mansion by climbing out of the second story window.
When she realized she couldn’t find her keys, she checked Bunn’s Mercedes, where she found his wallet and a pistol, which she took for protection despite not knowing how to fire it.
Under Alabama’s rape law, victims must prove they ‘earnestly’ resisted their attackers, and the investigator who interviewed Megan, Adam Jones, decided that she hadn’t done so against Bunn.
According to him, she hadn’t ‘kicked him or hit him,’ so the investigator would conclude that no rape occurred.
When she told him about going into Bunn’s car, video shows Jones entering and exiting the room, asking Megan questions that were about her behavior the previous night instead of her rape allegations.
Ladies, this is why you learn to fight.
What happened to Megan Rondini is tragic and should occur to no one. If she was well trained to protect herself, she may not have ended up in Bunn’s car.
Shame on authorities for believing that she was a ‘very willing participant’. No one who was willing would have suffered the trauma Megan did, after the ‘alleged’ rape, and then commit suicide.
Hopefully the parents of Megan will find the answers they need.
Give us your thoughts on the case below.