Thursday, August 13, 2009

UGLY

UGLY: About a week or so ago we received an email from talented and beloved kama`aina Bobbee Downs describing an horrific sexual assault that she recently endured in her home at Kalepa Village.

Then today we received another saying it had happened again to someone else in Kelepa.

We are posting both the original followed by today’s letter below.

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Dear Friends,

This note is intended to inform and create female partnerships on Kaua`i in combating sexual violence, and I suppose to debunk the myth that age is a particular factor in sexual abuse, which occurs anytime a perpetrator does anything of a sexual nature (verbal or physical) without the expressed consent of the victim or victims.

Early this morning, around 4:30 am, I awoke with a man standing over me touching me in the genital area. I SHOUTED at him to stop, and then he placed one strong hand on my chest, pushing me into the bed, and said, "no.” I continued to shout and SCREAM, which actually woke-up the baby next door, who started crying…and then he left! He didn’t bolt or run, he just walked quietly out and down the stairs.

I always keep my phone by my bed, but I couldn’t find it – he had hidden it under the bed. When I did find it I called 911 and the response team was here within 5 minutes. Another unit was immediately out looking for the perp, and actually did locate someone, but my description wasn’t close enough to hold him. A short time later the detectives also arrived and re-questioned me, hoping I could add some detail about hair, clothing, etc., but I had only focused on his face, which I have now sketched and given to them, since the two sketch artists with KPD had have retired.

He had also taken the time to go through my purse, stealing money, and went through several drawers in my dresser, plus he had completely rolled all of the bedding to one-side of my king-size bed. I live on the 2nd floor, the buildings are very well-lit, we have on-site police patrol, and my neighbors headboard is probably no more than 15 feet from mine, yet she didn’t actually hear me yelling…thank God for the baby!

Anyway, the number one error I made was in not closing & locking my front door, instead I left it open, with only the screen door locked. I’ve been doing that for years…but times have changed on Kaua`i.

Kalepa is a safe place to live, and the on-site KPD policeman patrols the complex-but he can’t see through walls! I also mistakenly thought that when one reaches a certain point-in-life you have some immunity. Untrue.

Here are some facts about sexual violence:

1 of every 6 American women and 1 of every 33 American men has been the victim of an attempted or completed rape.
Nearly 7 in 10 rape and sexual assault victims know their attacker. (I ABSOLUTELY have seen this man, either walking in the area, or maybe at 7-11, which is why I was so focused on his face…I was trying to place him!)
Acquaintance rape and date rape are more common than left-handedness, heart attacks or alcoholism. Rape and sexual assault are the least reported violent crime.

So, this man is out there, and he is pretty damned bold, potentially violent, and a threat to all of us. He is 5’7-5’9, medium build, medium skin tone, and neither Caucasian, Black, or Japanese, has medium to dark brown hair, slightly wavy, and worn back from his face, he has no facial hair, brown eyes, and though I only heard one word, he seemed to have a deep voice.

The KPD were excellent in all ways, asking the tough questions gently, giving me advice, offering services, doing a complete dusting of all possible surfaces, even giving me personal cell phone numbers to call. Jen & Joel were here in minutes, and as of an hour ago, I have a new roommate for awhile - Manapua the terrifying Boston Terrier has come to visit.

I don’t know when I’ll feel safe again, but I am taking back my power via a deadbolt, a dog, and a determination to not be ashamed to tell this story. We all need to be aware, even on Kaua`i

Please feel free to forward this to any friends or family who may benefit - especially women living alone or alone with small children.

Aloha, Bobbee
bobbeed(at)hotmail.com

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Aloha,

I am so sorry to report yet ANOTHER break-in (sliding glass door unlocked because the victim unexpectedly fell asleep watching TV.) She woke up with him on top of her, trying to take her clothes off!! This woman is in her 40's and tough as nails - she fought like a gladiator and got him off her and running out the door. It is possible that in this case the police will be able to collect DNA, and fingerprints.

She and I met this morning to compare notes - she didn't see his face, but he fits my description, and he used the same voice saying "no, no" trying to quiet her. I am going to show her my sketch later today, as I have to redraw it because I didn't make a copy of the 1st one I gave to the police.

So how did I learn about this episode, which happened at 2am Monday morning? Was there a flyer on my door? As of today, Thursday, NO information has put out by the management because the woman hadn't specifically asked them to, although she is doing so this afternoon. I heard about it from a neighbor last night, and I was immediately right back to where I was when it happened to me!

Again, please forward this on, the more people looking and watching, AND alerting friends or family at Kalepa Village the better. He is NOT a worker here, nor do I think he lives here...but he is entirely comfortable...there have been seven attempts over the last year or so, where he has been scared away. However he is definitely escalating, and gains more courage and power every time he ISN'T caught.

I believe the KPD are doing their job, and I don't want to become a vigilante or hinder their work in any way, but I am working on putting together a safety seminar, and Neighborhood Watch program. And again I reiterate, Kalepa Village is a well-run, safe place to live - this guy just has practiced here enough times to continue to terrorize the single woman who live alone here (over 70 of us, all ages.)

Here is the description again, with a bit more specific information than before:
He is 5’6-5’10, medium build, medium skin tone, and tends to look Filipino, though I believe he is probably a combination of ethnicities

He has medium to dark brown hair, slightly wavy, and worn back from his face with a short tight ponytail

He has no facial hair, brown eyes, and though I only heard one word, "no, no" he seemed to have a deep voice

He is very strong

He fits in anywhere, he is neat, clean, (no odor), and doesn't seem to be high or 'hopped' up. He walks among us everyday, he is someone you would NEVER think of as a perpetrator.

Thank all of you who have sent your kind words and good wishes, they definitely have helped me regain my sense of self. My move from victim to survivor was quick because I found a 'voice' through all of you who have passed this on. Please continue to do so, and there is no need to omit my name or telephone number. There are more than one of these perpetrator's out there, and we need to relearn and rethink the safety precautions we take. We need to reclaim Kaua`i's gentle lifestyle!

Aloha, Bobbee Downs

Ma ka hana ka ‘ike.
In working one learns.

1 comment:

shannon said...

Mahalo Bobbee!

Thank you for warning others and reclaiming your neighborhood!