assault
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A True Story of Sexual Assault (& Why THIS 14-year-old Almost Didn’t Speak Up)

(The following story is true, but the names have been changed to protect my friend and her daughter.)
Pam noticed that her daughter had been especially grouchy lately, but had just attributed it to her usual 14-year-old mood-swings. That didn’t keep Pam from asking, “What is WRONG with you???” after one particularly heated exchange. Her daughter, Ella, surprised her by saying, “Well…something happened the other day and I can’t stop thinking about it.”
Pam and Ella had taken a trip to Target just a few days before and, while her mother was in a dressing-room, a man had groped Ella. She was struggling to understand what had happened and all the horrible feelings she was having as a result. Pam was obviously horrified by this news, and immediately contacted the police and the Target they’d visited.
The assault had been captured on Target’s security cameras, as well as his swift departure in a van, but they were surprised by what else they found. Continue reading →