Dear Stanford Rape Victim
I want to first start this off by saying you didn’t deserve this, none of it. Deserve to go through such a traumatic and life altering experience and then to have your assault be seen as only “20 minutes of action.” I’m sorry that you have to look in the media and see your attacker and his family defending his actions. You didn’t choose to be raped, he made the decision to rape you. Yet he and his family chose to seek sympathy in a situation where there should be no sympathy for him at all.
At 20 years old, this young man should have been able to see the clear line between right and wrong, and yet he chose to do the unthinkable. At the same time, all his family can talk about is his lack of appetite and how much this experience has negatively affected them. This young man sexually assaulted you. This man took advantage of your unconscious self. This man did the unthinkable and I am sorry that they don’t think he needs more prison time, that some people think the maximum 15-year sentence will affect him too much. I am sorry he will not get the punishment he deserves. I am sorry that some people think the worst experience of your life is only worth six months of jail time. I am sorry that this young man will probably be back out on the streets in only three months.
I am sorry that the media made him out to be a clean cut young man, when his real mug shot shows who he truly is. I am sorry for the fact they look at his academics and his swimming record when they have nothing to do with the fact that he raped you. I am sorry that they make this disgusting excuse for a human being out to be a fine young man right in front of you. You deserve so much more than this and he deserves an actual prison sentence.
Though I am sorry this happened to you, at the same time I want to say thank you. Thank you for becoming a voice for other rape victims. A voice for other women. You have handled this situation with such grace while your attacker and his family have been trying to make him out to be the victim. Your letter to your attacker was heart wrenching and eye opening and I thank you for taking that leap. Your strength is something so many women can look up too when so many of them get knocked down, especially in these situations.
The moment I heard the beginning of your letter my mouth actually dropped. “You don’t know me, but you’ve been inside me, and that’s why we are here today.” Most women are too scared to go on trial in front of their rapist, and you chose to go on the stand and make a statement. Your letter should make an impact on every single person that reads it. Every. Single. One.
How dare they read your letter and see what you have gone through and still not believe that this young man deserves a real prison sentence. Reading lines of your letter such as, “And then, at the bottom of the article, after I learned about the graphic details of my own sexual assault, the article listed his swimming times. She was found breathing, unresponsive with her underwear six inches away from her bare stomach curled in fetal position. By the way, he’s really good at swimming. Throw in my mile time if that’s what we’re doing. I’m good at cooking, put that in there, I think the end is where you list your extracurriculars to cancel out all the sickening things that’ve happened.” This statement is so so so important. You are just proving that they are looking too much into what this attacker has been, not who he actually is. Also, my favorite quote from your entire letter, “to girls everywhere, I am with you. Thank you.” I just want you to know, that not just girls, but everyone, we are with you too. I am with you. We support you. You will get through this. There will be justice.
Just one of your supporters.
P.S.Thank you. Thank you to the two young men on bikes who stopped and helped. Thank you for chasing down a disgusting excuse for a human. Thank you for stepping in when so many people would not have made it their problem. You two are wonderful people and I have an endless amount of respect for you. You are true heroes.