In recent years, Virginia‘s filial responsibility law has been used for purposes not contemplated by its original architects. For example, it has allowed a brother, who had run his mother‘s finances into the ground, to sue his sister to hold her liable for his financial mistakes, burdening her with substantial litigation fees. The law has provided a forum for a stepfather to retaliate against his wife‘s children after the children petitioned the court to replace him as their mother‘s guardian.
*J.D. Candidate 2017, University of Richmond School of Law. M.A., 2012, New York University; B.A., 2010, University of Virginia.
In 1984 in Richmond, Virginia, Thomas Haynesworth was convicted of raping two women and indicted for raping three others. The first rape occurred on January 3, 1984. The assailant attacked his victim at her place of employment, threatened her with a knife, and raped her. On January 21, another woman was sodomized and robbed at knife point in Richmond. On January 30, a man pointed a gun at a woman and forced her into a secluded wood. The man forced the woman to orally sodomize him. He also unsuccessfully attempted to rape her. While committing these crimes, the gunman told the woman this was not his first time, but he usually used a knife rather than a gun. On February 1, a gunman confronted a woman in front of her Richmond home, and forced her back inside.
*J.D. Candidate 2017, University of Richmond School of Law. B.A., 2013, University of Virginia.