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Tawana Brawley Rape - 1987
One of the most famous self-inflicted crime hoaxes of all time is still contentious today, so let’s go with what we know. In November of 1987, young Tawana Brawley was found after missing for four days near her hometown of Wappingers Falls, New York. Her clothes were burned and racial epithets were written on her body with charcoal. A massive media circus erupted, during which she accused six men of kidnapping and sexually abusing her, including a Duchess County assistant district attorney. When the case went to a Grand Jury investigation, the floor fell out from under Brawley: Her rape kit showed no evidence of sexual trauma, and when she was found she was well fed and her teeth had been brushed recently, contradicting her story of being imprisoned without food for four days. And even though her clothes had been burned, there were no burn marks on her body. We still don’t know what drove her to do it, and her family still claims that the accused are guilty. It may remain a mystery forever.