False rape report could lead to arrest

UPDATE • City might charge woman who reported being attacked by two men on Monday
by: Courtesy of Gresham PD Gresham Police Chief Craig Junginger said Friday that a sexual assault reported Monday near the Gresham Station was false. The woman admitted to police the story was a fabrication, he told reporters.

Gresham police are still considering whether to charge a woman for filing a false police report after she recanted her story about being grabbed and raped by two strangers at a popular local shopping mall in broad daylight last week.

Gresham Police Chief Craig Junginger said in a press conference Friday, July 29, that Danielle Elizabeth Hayes, 35, of Gresham admitted to filing the false report Monday, July 25.

'We now know that no rape occurred, no suspects existed and the public is safe from this threat,' Junginger said.

In addition to the false rape, the woman also falsely reported being robbed. She told police the rapist stole two rings worth $1,050 - including her wedding ring - off her fingers during the attack.

During the press conference, Junginger emphasized the severity of filing a false police report.

'Clearly this is not a good use of our limited police resources, and we are currently checking into the possibility of additional charges related to this misuse of the criminal justice system,' Junginger said.

Meerta Meyer, commercial property manager of Gresham Station Shopping Center, where the woman said the rape took place, said she hopes this fabricated story will not deter actual victims from coming forward.

'This is a horrific incident and very disheartening to people who have been victims of sexual assault,' Meyer said.

Junginger echoed that.

'While wasting law enforcement time and increasing anxiety in the community is never acceptable, we want to be absolutely sure to not discourage real crime victims from coming forward, even if they think their cases would be hard to prove.

'It is extremely rare to have somebody fabricate charges of this magnitude, and real victims of real crimes should never be afraid to approach the police.'

However, this could also be why the woman might not face misdemeanor charges.

'It is a fine line whether to pursue charges when it may alienate other women who may have a valid rape claim,' Junginger said.

Gresham police detectives are still working with the Multnomah County District Attorney's Office on whether to press charges.