Clint Rickards, Bob Schollum and Brad Shipton have been found "not guilty" in the police rape trial. I wasn't in the courtroom, so I don't know all the evidence - but from media reports, the case against them was strong. There are going to be a lot of people feeling that justice has failed here, that these men have got away with repeatedly raping and victimising a young woman all those years ago because they wore a police uniform. But the reason they have "gotten away with it" is because the evidence did not convince the jury beyond a reasonable doubt - that the case simply wasn't strong enough - and because we operate on the principle that it is far better for the guilty to go free than see the innocent wrongly jailed. Today's acquittal is, in a sense, the price of that principle. It's shitty, but its what happens when we deliberately try and avoid one sort of miscarriage of justice at the risk of creating another.
I am sure that that is no consolation whatsoever to Louise Nicholas. But she may be able to take consolation in the fact that this trial will taint her abusers for the rest of their lives, and that Clint Rickards will almost certainly never get to be Police Commissioner. And she might also be able to take consolation in the fact that some of her abusers might not have gotten away with everything. It's not enough, any more than seeing Slobodan Milosevic die before his trial was complete was enough for his victims - but it is at least something.