Victim describes her life after rape
Following is the statement of the victim in the case. A caution: Some of the information may be disturbing for younger readers. It is being printed by the Nevada Appeal because of the insight it provides into the brutality and lasting effects of the crime.
– Editor Barry Smith
Now my name is Jane Doe.
On Aug. 7, 2003, I thought I was going to go to a baby-sitting job for Kevin (that’s what he said his name was), but instead Michael Botelho took me up in the hills and raped me. That day changed my family’s life and my life forever. I sat there not knowing if I was going to live or to die. I kept telling myself over and over again, “This is all a horrible dream.” I think that thought is how I got through his horrifying rape. I would like to tell you what my life has been like for the past eight months and how Michael Botelho’s crime has affected me.
Being raped has turned my whole world upside-down in every horrible, possible way. I’ve been through four internal pelvic exams – which is pretty unusual and scary for somebody my age who hasn’t even started their period yet -13 separate blood tests, two X-rays and two ultrasounds, which have to be repeated in a couple of years because of my size. We don’t really know if I will even be able to have kids of my own because of the damage that has been done. I have just received the paperwork for my fourth HIV test. I have seven more of those to go over the next 4 1/2 years. A lot of those procedures I have gone through have been painful, scary and embarrassing. I have been on antidepressants and medication to sleep because I have not been able to sleep, and when I do, I have really bad dreams.
I live my life afraid. I can’t even stay alone in my house. I lock every single lock on every single door and am still scared. I’m afraid of men now, even the ones I knew before this happened. To get into a car with a man, especially if I have to get in the back seat, it takes everything I’ve got and then I’m still scared. Even with my grandpa. I’m always watching the road to make sure we’re going where we are supposed to be going. I started school two weeks after the rape. I had to get some of my classes changed so that I only have female teachers. I’m afraid now to trust anybody.
I have never in my life been so scared. I’m still scared. I feel like I have to watch my back every second of every day, and I hate it. I hate that I have no freedom. I’m afraid to go anywhere alone. My brother walks me to and from my friend’s house, and my mom drives me wherever else I go. I hate this. No one should ever have to be this afraid. Ever.
My family and closest friends don’t know what to say or do. They all want to help me; they just don’t know how. My brother goes in another room when my mom and I start to talk about the rape. My father feels that he let me down. He does not know what to say or do; he feels helpless. My grandfather cannot find the words to say how much this has torn him up, but what he does say is how lucky we are to still have me here. My mother feels like she let me down because she wasn’t there to protect me from this. My best friend is afraid to talk about it because she thinks that she might say the wrong thing. She won’t, though.
I feel so much grief from this. I am so embarrassed by it, and I’m so afraid that he’ll come back and do it again, maybe this time even worse. My grandma always used to say, “God never gives you anything that he thinks that you cannot handle.” This has made me wonder. I know I will survive this, and I hope one day I can help other victims. I know how terrible it can be. I’ve lived it non-stop for the past eight months and will for the rest of my life. I would never wish this kind of life on anybody in the whole world.
I think Michael Botelho should receive the maximum sentences for what he did to me and took from me to make sure that he can never do this to any other girl, ever. Nobody should ever have to go through the pain and humiliation, the anguish, the terror I have. I didn’t deserve this. No one does. I don’t ever want to have to worry there will be a day that Michael Botelho will be released from prison and come knocking on my door. He warned me if I told anyone, he would come back and do worse. I don’t want that to happen. I just want to be me again.