Survivor Stories




In the summer of 2001, when I was just a teenager, a police officer sexually assaulted me outside my apartment complex in Virginia. As I was walking on the sidewalk with a friend, sometime after 11:00 pm, two white police officers stopped us. Then they frisked us. The officer who was frisking me grabbed my private part. I immediately complained, and he responded by grabbing me by my shirt from behind and choking me. He stopped only after the other police officer told him that somebody across the street was watching.

I believe that I was targeted because I was a teenager and because of my race.

The abuse affected me emotionally and mentally, causing shame, anger, and a feeling of hatred. I would have a hard time sleeping, because I continued to think of the situation and all the anger I had toward cops. I guess this was one those things that made me act the way that I did back then.

— Denis, Virginia