SURVIVOR TESTIMONY

Some of these stories are graphic, uncensored accounts of actual rapes and surrounding circumstances. The language used may be raw and include street slang. JDI has made only minor edits for spelling and clarity. The views expressed are those of the individual survivor/author, and are not necessarily the views of Just Detention International.

I have been in custody since March 11, 2010, when I was repeatedly tortured and sexually abused by law enforcement officers at a police lock-up in California.

I was wrongfully arrested because of my political activities, and officers conspired to torture and abuse me. Over the course of several hours, six law enforcement officials beat and sexually assaulted me while I was naked and handcuffed. They burned my genitals with tasers and stun guns and anally sodomized me. In addition to the sexual abuse, officers also beat me with their fists, batons, and flashlights; they kicked me in the face; and they slammed me against the ground, exacerbating an existing disability and back injury. I was strangled and smothered so that I could not cry for help. An officer put a gun to the back of my head and threatened to kill me. My injuries were extensive and severe, and I threw up from the shock and the pain of the abuse.

It was very difficult for me to report the abuse. I contacted the FBI and the police and filed over 50 requests and at least three or four grievances, but nothing was done to help me. Police officials have also tried to cover up the abuses by hiding evidence and lying about the events that took place on March 11th. After the assault, I was given a cursory exam by a physician's assistant, but I was not offered any other services, including a forensic exam or counseling. Instead, police officers threw me in a cold cell without a blanket or any food and left me there alone.

Shortly after the assaults, I was transferred to a county jail to await trial. I was mistreated by jail staff in retaliation for coming forward about the abuse by the police. Jail officials placed me with known predatory cellmates and people with HIV, Hepatitis, and other communicable diseases. I tried to get counseling from the jail psychiatrist and spoke with my attorney and the Sheriffs, but I was told to forget about the abuse.

As a result of the sexual trauma and torture I have suffered, I developed Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). I feel sad, humiliated, angry, depressed, and suicidal. I have lost weight and hair and have seizures from the nerve damage caused by the taser abuse. I feel like my life is over and that I am worthless.

I was recently released on probation and I am trying to put my life together. It is very difficult for me. All my life I worked, only to have my things destroyed along with my life and my plans for the future.

I have fits of rage. I am very angry with government officials and law enforcement officers and have difficulty trusting anyone. I have even considered renouncing my U.S. citizenship since I feel so betrayed after being abused by the very people whose job it is to protect the public. Never in my life did I think I would be sexually assaulted by law enforcement officers.

I will never be the same. The anger and depression I feel is overwhelming. My family gets afraid because I am so angry. They don't understand. Sexual assault is terrible. It's like destroying a person but making them live the rest of their lives in never-ending state of fear, depression, doubt, betrayal, anger, addiction and pain.

- Micah, California

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