a rape survivor speaks up when judge let’s the convicted rapist off with no jail time

a rape survivor speaks up when judge let’s the convicted rapist off with no jail time

alone

try to imagine:

when you are a child and someone older, an adult, tells you something you generally buy it bc they are adults and you are a stupid kid.  you are a young girl who is raped and threatened that if you tell anyone you will be killed or your family will be endanger, you are going to believe that.  you have just taken a trip on the scariest roller coaster through hell.  having to see the man every day who raped you, is unbearable.  going to sleep is a battle, fear keeping you at the verge of consciousness.  you don’t ever calm down, your nervous system standing on end, hypothalmus in overdrive, and muscles ready to run or fight at any given moment.  for years.  years you are tormented by the site of the man next door, his face hovering over yours, threats spewing out of his mouth.  you hold back tears during the flashbacks bc you can’t answer the questions everyone asks you.  you must paint on a smile and hope noone sees through your bullshit facade of happiness.

four years later, you have settled into your self loathing and self blaming, you are comfortable with your fear.  you tell your friends and they tell your parents.  speaking the truth for the first time in four years.  now, your parents tell you you need to go to the police.  everyone tells you you need to talk about it, you need to help stop this monster from doing this to anyone else.  the lives of other innocent young girls are now on your shoulders.  you tell your story to strangers over and over again.  you have ppl question you, doubt you, believe you, ppl look at you with sympathy in their eyes, and your parents cry and blame themselves.

you go to court, and go through a trail.  this is no longer about justice for what has happened to you in the past, you are now doing everything within your power and control to protect that little girl that just moved into the neighborhood from going through the same thing.  you are fighting for her.  you tell your story to a room full of supporters and strangers facing the man who has changed your life forever, physically holding onto the chair bc otherwise you might run out the door.  he is still scary.  you hold the picture of the ‘next girl’ in your mind and you swallow and you tell your story from years ago.  you do it for her.  for the next girl.  you did what you could.  it’s now up to the jury.

the jury leaves and determines that the man is guilty of raping you.  around you you can hear the sighs of relief.  you can hear the shuffle of vengeance.  is this real?  did they just say “guilty”?  it takes a while but it finally washes over you like a bucket of cold water!  he is guilty of rape!!!!  for the first time in years, a small bit of fear leaves your body. for the first time in years, you can relax a bit.

your parents hug you.  your friends hug you.  he was found guilty, and that translates into you were found innocent.

you walk back into the court room and the judge sets the sentence for the man who has tortured you for so long,  the man who took your innocence and who caused your neurological system to be on hyperdrive for your adult life.

“six years probation and two years in a non-violent community corrections center” is what judge james w. woodroof, jr. sentenced a convicted rapist for twice raping a 14 year old girl named courtney andrews, who is now 20.  she is speaking up and out for justice!  she was silenced for 4 years by the man who lived next door to her.  the rapist, austin smith clem, lucked out in the defense attorney dept!  it just so happened that his attorney was childhood buds with the HONORABLE (gag cough) james w woodroof, jr!

just in case anyone wanted to write the HONORABLE judge james w woodroof, jr please do remember that he is a judge and if you take it too far you can be arrested…but i personally think he needs to know that he, not courtney, has the life of the next girl on his conscious!  so please keep it dignified and no threats, please. (i am not responsible for what is said to the HONORABLE judge james woodroof, jr!)

Judge James W Woodroof, Jr.
Limestone County Circuit Court
200 Washington St. 3rd Floor
Athens, AL 35611
Phone: (256) 233-6410
Fax: (256) 233-6664

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