Survivor Stories




In 2005, I was transferred to a new prison. It wasn’t bad at first. Then when I got a new cellmate, it turned into a house of horrors. I endured many beatings while the officers turned their heads. I still remember the first time my cellmate punched me in the head and let me know that I had the choice of either submitting to his will or suffering the consequence of having a body covered in bruises.

He made crude comments about my body, making explicit references to certain parts. Things got even worse. He started to do things that hurt and demeaned me. He demanded sexual favors, including oral sex.

I decided to do something about the sexual terror I was experiencing. I waited until my cellmate went to work to make my escape. When the nurse came to bring my depression medication, I said I wanted to kill myself. I was placed in an isolation cell, where I informed the psych staff I was being sexually assaulted. Although I was placed in a new cell, I continued to receive threats when I went to the chow hall.

I was transferred shortly afterward, but I still have nightmares of the terrible experiences I had in that cell. I have bad dreams about that cellmate, and hope I never run into him again. I am thankful I escaped the devastating situation. I hope my testimony can help others make changes necessary to avoid the terrible experience of sexual assault in a detention facility.