Shenzhen Police Say An American Raped A 16-Year-Old Chinese Girl Last Month [UPDATE]

UPDATE, 2/20/13, 2:47 am: On February 15, Robert McDowell emailed us his side of the story: that he was drugged, a fact that “everyone knows.” He claimed the girl confessed. “If I was a rapist then I would be in jail right now,” he wrote. 

We’ve removed the image of him first found on The Nanfang.

Pictured is Robert Dean McDowell, an American in Shenzhen who’s being investigated for rape, as announced yesterday by the Nanhu Police Station in Shenzhen’s Luohu District, reported by Shenzhen Daily.

The alleged rape of a Chinese 16-year-old girl, whom McDowell is said to have gotten drunk, happened on September 23. We’re not sure why this is only now being reported, but nonetheless, Shenzhen Daily again:

According to Chinese law, raping a girl younger than 14 is statutory rape. But penalties for raping a girl younger than 18 also are more severe than those for raping an adult.

The case was transferred to the criminal investigation department because of McDowell’s status as a foreigner and more details could not be released, police said.

Several expatriates who knew McDowell and refused to be identified said he had lived in cities including Shenzhen and Dongguan for years, and very often hung out at bars and clubs in the Guomao area. His line of work involved trade between Shenzhen and the United States.

This incident will not be helping trade between Shenzhen and the United States. We will probably be hearing more about this McDowell figure, much to our dismay. His alleged crime is somewhat much worse than random assault and carjacking.

(H/T The Nanfang)

23 Responses to “Shenzhen Police Say An American Raped A 16-Year-Old Chinese Girl Last Month [UPDATE]”

  1. Jozzer

    There’s stacks of seedy pervy bigots in Shenzhen. Usually bloated middle aged gross white men hanging around the sports bars in guffawing groups in Coco Park. When I first arrived in SZ I did the usual and signed up to a forum, [shenzhenstuff] to say hi and whatnot but you only have to spend a few minutes browsing the forum to get a picture of the type. posting with usernames like “youngchinesegirlliberator” it’s pretty depressing.

    Reply
  2. King Baeksu

    I would question the posting here of this man’s name, and especially photograph.

    Just because the Chinese media lack standards doesn’t mean we need to follow suit.

    This man’s reputation has now been ruined, even before he has been tried in a court of law.

    Reply
  3. Greg Mac

    I echo this call. Even the Shenzhen Daily had the ethical standing not to publish the man’s photo. Please refrain from the “but you can find it on Google” defense. That’s a cop out, even for a blog.,

    Reply
  4. skeptical ned

    Yup, he could be totally innocent plus he’s in a world of pain right now. What’s the logic in splashing his face on the main page? I’m genuinely curious as to the rationale.

    Btw, as to ‘why now’: the police only announce to the media this kind of detailed info when the case is a fait accompli. With a Chinese, this would be after he’s been tried/convicted. With a foreigner, there might be a need to be seen to be doing the right thing publicly, rule of law etc. Either way , I’d put good money that Robert McDowell is now fucked

    Reply
  5. The Tao

    I understand your skepticism, but while we’re using the word “could” here, McDowell *could* be a rapist who deserves everything he has coming to him. I guess more than anything, this incident, with the facts available to us, is just a Rorschach test for how you view China.

    And guys: what country do you come from in which it’s a violation of media ethics to publish the photo of someone charged with a violent crime?

    Reply
    • Tom F

      Fan of the blog, but have to agree with above comments. Sex crimes are different in their reportage in the media because, as most people accept with such offenses, if you throw enough mud some of it sticks. Exception to this rule are usually people in the public eye, like Dominique Strauss-Kahn. Not sure who this American bloke is, but he has been condemned already. He might well be guilty, but that’s for the court to judge. In China, accusations of sex crimes get made often with the motive to defame – as evidence in August by the Peking University professor Zou Hengfu, who made unsubstantiated claims of a similar nature. In any case, let’s be grateful the 16 year old has thankfully remained anonymous.

      Reply
    • King Baeksu

      The question you should be asking yourself is do you trust the Chinese police, especially what they have to say about non-Chinese individuals?

      Even if you trust them 99%, that’s still not good enough.

      Reply
    • British lawyer

      Countries where the legal standard for burden of proof is considerably higher (beyond a reasonable doubt), the police are not utterly corrupt, defence lawyers have access to the evidence in good time (disclosure), judges are not merely an arm of the state, and each defendant is guaranteed a trial by a jury of his peers. oh yes, and the media has, ostensibly at least, some set of ethical standards. the list goes on, really.

      Reply
  6. Tom F

    I meant to address the question above, too. Can’t speak for other countries, but the Press Council along with courts in Australia prohibit media outlets from identifying alleged sex criminals in offenses involving minors to protect the identity of the victim. I guess the logic is that identifying the perpertator can indirectly identify the victim, which is fair enough in small communities where many people know each other. Not sure having the world’s largest population should diminish responsibility.

    Reply
  7. bert

    I know this is about rape but I read that under Chinese law 14 is the age of consent. Maybe they added a bit to the case (her being drunk) to make it tougher for the guy.

    One wonders if it is another story being used to put peoples focus on the ‘bad laowai’ in China?

    I am sure CCP gov’t thugs do this everyday in China.

    Reply
  8. Not Robert's friend

    I know this sick fuck and there is CCTV footage of him carrying the unconcious girl up to his apartment.
    And guess what? He is a bad Laowei.

    Reply
      • Not Robert's friend

        By you not having met the guy I can understand your scepticism. The thing is he is the most despised foreigner that lives in in the area by all other foreigners. There is not one person who feels sorry for him. And this incident is just an escalation of past behaviour he bragged about in the past.

        Reply
      • Not Robert's friend

        Says me that has met him and heard him brag about how he picks up hookers and when he is finished with them he puts on what he calls his “Dumbface” and not understand when they aske him to pay. Or how he refers to his girlfriend as his “bitch” which he keeps around to clean and “nail to the wall every morning” and whose Dad told him “it was OK for him to bang other girls as long as he did not hurt his daughter”.
        Just an all round nice guy whose reputation is now in ruins.

        Reply
  9. adam

    How and why did China allow this piece of white trash into the country ?

    A search of sex offenders registry in USA brought up his name and mug shot too.

    Reply
    • Di Round

      Yup, that was in about 1992 or 1993 and his ex-father-in-law told him to plead guilty because he was too timid to defend him. He did not solicit sex but he was soliciting someone to cook for him. Stupid stupid. Nary a blip on the screen after that so I guess mistakes have been made. Bet Mr. McDowell quits bragging about his conquests from here on out.

      Reply
  10. Di Round

    Mr. McDowell has been released by CID because the EVIDENCE showed that he never had sex at all with this girl. Turns out she wasn’t 16 at all but 27. She had drugged Mr. McDowell and taken all his belongings in sacks. She and her 2 accomplices were trying to rob him. Mr. McDowell did not pick her up at all. He was in the bar and she came up and kissed him (total stranger) and pushed a pill in his mouth. Beware Americans, there are scam artist out there waiting for you.

    Reply

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