There is a repeated question in my mind regarding this whole Steubenville Rape case debacle and Alexandria “Prinnie” Goddard’s involvement therein which is: why is she interested in this case and how did she initially learn about it to begin with? On the surface I can understand why she might be outraged at the allegations of gang rape by certain Steubenville High School football players. Considering the alleged circumstances, who wouldn’t be? However, something about Alexandria “Prinnie” Goddard’s tone in blogging about the Steubenville Rape case and the allegations of wrongdoing from the very beginning have bothered me. It wasn’t until this morning while I sat quietly drinking my coffee that it suddenly occurred to me that this so-called Prinne-the-investigative-blogger might have a personal interest in this case, other than claims of wanting justice for the alleged victim. Furthermore, perhaps seeking notoriety at the expense of the victim and the accused is not her only goal? No, I think not. There’s an underlying current in her pursuit of this case that so far has lacked definition and I believe that it just might be personal in nature.
As a private investigator and as a student of human behavior, I have learned through experience to follow the evidence wherever it may lead. Conversely, and more importantly I have also learned to not lead the evidence wherever I may wish it to end. As a result, it is my job to uncover facts and to present those facts as they appear and not as the client perhaps wants them to appear. Truthfully, this is one of the more difficult aspects of my job. Without becoming too technical or diverting from the original focus of this commentary I’ll simply state that it can often be the case that the information I find in the course and scope of my job very often is not what the client expects or wants to hear. As human beings we are all subject to personal bias but as an investigator, I have to set that aside which can be difficult for clients who insist that “xyz” is true and demand that I corroborate their assumptions by tailoring the facts to fit their personal bias. I don’t do that. Why? Because professionally I have a legal and ethical mandate to report the truth. When I testify in court regarding a particular case I testify to the facts and not my personal opinion. Simply stated, my personal opinion regarding a case or cases, as well as the case participants, does not matter. What matters are the facts, the truth, and what information can be corroborated. End of story. So, what does this have to do with Alexandria “Prinnie” Goddard and the Steubenville Rape case? I’m so glad that you asked.
Let’s go back to the beginning when Alexandria “Prinnie” Goddard, or whatever she’s calling herself this week, enlisted the help of Joey Ortega in pursuing the investigation of the Steubenville Rape case. Prinnie has insisted all along that had it not been for her “reporting” about the Steubneville Rape case then “nothing would have been done and no one would know about the case!” But is that true? No, it isn’t. Prinnie herself can be heard on the August 31, 2012 Behind The Yellow Tape episode in which it is clearly stated that the person who initially reported on this case was David Bloomquist, better known as sportscaster and radio personality Bloomdaddy in Ohio. For the record, it was Bloomquist that insisted that local media in Ohio cover the case, not Prinnie. Why is this important? It’s important because Prinnie’s focus throughout this entire investigation has been on promoting herself for bringing this case to media attention. I can almost hear the collective Internet sign from my readership, ”What difference does it make who was first with the story?” Whine, whine, whine. But it does matter and this why: if Prinnie cannot be honest and accurate with minor details that some may consider insignificant e.g. who was first to report, then how can she be trusted to report accurately the larger and more significant facts that are pertinent to this case? Ahhhh… yes. The devil is, indeed, in the details. Prinnie has taken credit for a lot in terms of popularizing and sensationalizing this case but very little, if any, responsibility in distorting the facts and potentially damaging the chances for justice to prevail in this case. Motivation is the point.
Why isn’t anyone questioning Prinnie’s lack of objectivity in her so-called reporting regarding the Steubenville Rape case. Furthermore, what of her flagrant and unsupported accusations against the “football culture” in Steubenville, and specifically against Cody Saltsman? I understand that Cody made some spectacularly grotesque comments on his Twitter regarding who we assume to be the Steubenville Rape victim; however, why did Prinnie feel justified in stating on her blog:
“students by day … gang rape participants by night,” Goddard wrote, “Cody Saltsman [is] playing tonight. Reno, SHAME ON YOU.”
and encouraging other football players to “roll” on particular teammates
“roll on their pal Cody Manson”
“[p]erhaps when scumbag is finally arrested I will post a picture of him for his mother that says ‘How do you like your scumbag son now?’ … Tell Cody not to feel too bad, he is not the lone asshole in all this.”
The above comments were the subject of the lawsuit against Prinnie that she likes to claim was dismissed with prejudice which is correct but that isn’t a unilateral legal statement of Prinnie’s innocence. From what I understand, the dismissal with prejudice was more a stroke of luck for Prinnie and unrelated to her specific comments toward Cody Saltsman. Of course, I may have that wrong but research seems to indicate that this is true. Anyone with documentation to the contrary is encouraged to share it. Regardless, and again I ask, why isn’t anyone questioning Prinnie’s lack of objectivity in relation to this case and her – in this writer’s opinion – gross negligence in investigating the facts before seeking tabloid notoriety in the name of justice for the victim? Me thinks that something is rotten in Denmark (thank you, Shakespeare).
According to David Bloomquist, everyone knows everyone in the Ohio valley. Understanding that Prinnie is from Ohio and reportedly still lives there, I would assume that this applies to her, as well. If this is true then I wonder, who does she know in relation to this case and why is she so insistent on demonizing and entire football team at the expense of the victim? Reading her blog posts on this case particularly of late would make any thinking person wonder why she feels so personally involved. Why does it matter to Prinnie and why taunt Cody Saltsman’s mother in such a hateful manner? If my information is correct, Prinnie is from Ohio so it would seem from the outside looking in that she has an axe to grind with the community of Steubenville, or particular persons therein. I wonder what that might be.
Let me state emphatically that I’m not suggesting that this case does not deserve national attention. However, more than national attention, the victim in this case deserves justice and what has all of Prinnie’s blustering accomplished to that end? Nothing. Not only nothing but also potentially the opposite. It seems to me that this is a point chronically lost on Prinnie as she continues to call attention to herself and not the facts of the case. As I pondered this point this morning it occurred to me, is she using this case to get even with someone in her own personal life for some perceived wrong? Hmmmm… one wonders. How did she hear about the case in the first place? If the media wasn’t covering the story then how did she find out about it and why the immediate leap to blame football culture for a cover up? Those are merely questions of course and not specific accusations but still I wonder why others are not openly questioning her underlying motivations. It would appear that not one bit of Prinnie’s attention seeking behavior has been about ensuring justice for the victim; quite the opposite, in fact. Her behavior has been pointed directly at herself.
I should take this opportunity to remind everyone that Prinnie is a blogger, not a journalist. She has a glaring gap in skills and credibility to be considered an actual investigative journalist. Did she interview anyone without personal bias to acquire facts in this case? Maybe in the beginning but as of late, it does not appear so. Was she objective in her blogging? No. Did she report the known facts from both sides? No. What she did do was attach herself to an actual investigator with a long history of critical thinking skills and objective assessment of case facts, Joey Ortega. She stood behind his skill and reputation as an investigator then ran and hid like a child when the proverbial excrement hit the fan. This is not the behavior of a skilled investigator but, rather, it is that of an attention seeking weak personality.
With all of her vindictive behavior one might think that Prinnie has a personal interest in seeing Steubenville and its residents suffer harm. I contend that it just might be the case that Prinnie has a score to settle and is using an alleged rape victim to accomplish that goal. There’s a difference between working toward legal justice for a crime committed and publicly humiliating alleged perpetrators AND the victim. It would appear by her own actions that Prinnie’s focus is the latter rather than the former. Maybe that wasn’t her intention but that has certainly been the result.
It has yet to be proven as fact what exactly occured on the night of August 11, 2012 and the accusations of rape at this point are precisely that; accusations. True, two individuals have been charged with rape of the victim but nothing has been proven in a court of law, yet. Therefore, the term alleged is used for both protection of the victim and the accused. What is more is that because of Prinnie’s machinations in what this writer believes was deliberate manipulation by her an her cohorts of an Anonymous-wannbe to further her personal agenda, the accused in the Steubenville Rape case will be rushed to trial within the next thirty days. Evidence has potentially been tainted, the victims identity compromised, and insofar as I understand it, a change of venue has been requested because this case cannot receive unadulterated and unbiased attention.
What I would like to know is who on earth does Alexandria “Prinnie” Goddard think she is to be parading around the details of this case at the expense of the victim? This is real life and not some poorly scripted made for TV movie! Unfortunately, it would appear that Prinnie and her audience cannot tell the difference between the two which only drives her further into the spotlight at the expense of the truth. Using a photo of a young girl’s sexual violation online to promote herself, then to openly claim that she wants to help the victim is beyond the pale. What gives her the right to violate this girl’s privacy? Did she even to bother to consult the victim’s family before going off half-cocked as it were, in her quest to make a name for herself? Not likely! Also, why does she throw stones and then hide when things become complicated? Again, I point to lack of skill and professionalism.
Finally, there is something that bothers me about this Alexandria “Prinnie” Goddard even further. Why has she used so many different names in her quest to build a believable reputation as an investigator over the years? For someone who claims to have ten years of experience in crime investigative blogging she certainly changes identities abruptly and haphazardly. She’s known by Alexandria Goddard, Alex Goddard, Stacy Goddard, Princess, Prinnie, and who knows what else. Why so many identities in her pursuit for what I believe to be fame? What is she hiding or is she running from something? Perhaps both? It’s one thing to hone ones image over time for professional reasons but to completely (and repeatedly) shun one identity for another is what we professional investigators refer to as a “giant red flag” potentially pointing toward deliberate deception.
It occurs to me that it must be a full-time job keeping up with all of her pretentious online identities and this is something to which I cannot relate. It’s a full-time job for me to simply be myself. I wouldn’t be able to earn a living if I had to hide behind a plethora of fake identities. When does she have time to lead a real life or conduct a thorough investigation? Who is she really and what in the grand scheme of things is her true internal motivation, particularly in the Steubenville Rape case? To her followers who keep up with my blog, and I know you’re out there, perhaps you should be asking precisely the same questions rather than blindly following her lead.
As a side note, I would like to point out that the town of Steubenville and its authorities have been forthcoming insofar as professionally and legally permitted in dealing with Joey Ortega as respects this investigation which casts significant doubt on the claims by Prinnie of widespread corruption. For whatever reason the town of Steubenville appears to be the unfair target of Prinnie’s misguided desire to expose corruption. It would seem clear that the only villain in this story who is clearly working under the veil of corruption is Alexandria “Prinnie” Goddard and her allies. Pot, kettle, black.
© Amy Lynn Burch 2008 – 2013
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