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Rape suspect given condom is not indicted

A woman expressed outrage over a grand jury's refusal to indict a rape suspect who wore a condom at her request.

"I was raped by a man and now I'm being raped by society," the woman said.

The suspect, 27-year-old Joel Rene Valdez, said the woman consented to having sex. "She's the one who gave me the condoms. If she didn't want to, why would she give me the condoms?" he said.

Valdez told police he had sex with the woman after hiding in her apartment. The woman said she asked the stranger, who was carrying a knife, to wear the condom because she wanted protection from diseases.

After the decision, police filed a burglary charge against Valdez stemming from his entry into the woman's apartment.

The woman says the incident has turned her life upside down. She plans to buy a gun. "No one is ever going to touch me again. I'd rather be dead than go through this again," she said.

"It's really unfortunate for her because she was able to protect herself. Now, that protection is being used against her," said Lynn Thompson Haas, executive director of the Austin Rape Crisis Center. "Just because she asked not to be hurt doesn't mean she's consenting.

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