Ione Wells, a 20 year old student of Oxford, has published an open letter to her sex attacker.
She was assaulted close to her home in Camden.
The English literature student waived her right to privacy by publishing her name and photo in her university newspaper; the reason being her trying to encourage others who’ve been assaulted not to remain silent.
The letter launches an online campaign against sexual assault.
I cannot address this letter to you, because I do not know your name. I only know that you have just been charged with serious sexual assault and prolonged attack of a violent nature. And I have one question.
When you were caught on CCTV following me through my neighbourhood, when you waited until I was on my own street to approach me, when you clapped your hand around my face until I could not breathe, when you pushed me to my knees until my face bled, when I wrestled with your hand just enough so that I could scream.
When you dragged me by my hair, and when you smashed my head against the pavement and told me to stop screaming, when my neighbour saw you and shouted at you and you looked her in the eye and carried on kicking me.
When you tore my bra in half from the sheer force you grabbed my breast, when you didn’t reach for my belongings because you wanted my body, when you failed to have my body because all my neighbours and family came out, and you saw them … did you ever think of the people in your life?
My community will not feel we are unsafe walking back home after dark. We will get on the last Tube home, and we will walk up our streets alone, because we will not ingrain or submit to the idea that we are putting ourselves in danger in doing so… Your community – even if you can’t see it around you every day. It is there. It is everywhere.
You underestimated mine. Or should I say ours? I could say something along the lines of, ‘Imagine if it had been a member of your community,’ but instead let me say this. There are no boundaries to community; there are only exceptions, and you are one of them.
A man has been arrested by the London Metropolitan police in connection to the attack and is set to be in court on the 6th of May.
Ione Wells’ bravery has received many commendations via the social media:
— Kicesie Drew (@Kicesie) April 30, 2015
— Kate (@RainbowKate) April 30, 2015
— Rob Castell (@robcastell100) April 30, 2015
The full letter can be found here:
To everyone in the #notguilty community – THANK YOU. Remember my case is only one of many, many others. We have much more fighting to do!
— Ione Wells (@ionewells) April 29, 2015