Travails of a Trafficked Victim Pt3
Travails of a Trafficked Victim Pt3
My Son: My Consolation
As we continued to attend court hearings, my heart bled. I was so afraid that I did not know what to expect. Even though, there were shelter advocates from the legal office of the Alexandra House supporting me by going to court with me, I felt so lonely, cold and dead.
Becki, one of the advocates at Alexandra House was there for me too. She was in court as a witness, as I was afraid that Samuel might be taken away from me. His father had presented me as mentally incapable to take care of him. But he was all I had. He was my consolation for the agony I went through, so he was all that I could hold on to for life support.
Despite the fact that I felt like a walking corpse, I held on to him for support and inner strength. Many a times, I held him close to my chest. And, several nights, I just hugged him tightly on our single bunk bed and cry bitterly. The saliva in my mouth tasted stale and bitter. I drank my own tears like water and my nose dripped like that of Pavlov’s dog. I was told that my case was a complicated one. But on December 10, 2007, in Judge Hayse’s court room, the judgments were passed. My husband had also filed an OFP against me with false police reports saying that I threatened to kill him.
He had lied to the police officers that I was his “girlfriend.” After our testimonies and cross examinations, however, the judge dismissed his case, saying, he was only doing tit for tat, as I had filed an OFP on behalf of myself and my son against him first. Judge Hayse dismissed my case too due to lack of evidence. I had no witness on the allegations I had against my husband. Those who knew what was going on would not show up in court or write an affidavit to support my testimony.
In fact, I was not happy with the way my attorney handled my case. I believed she did not take it seriously. She had been trying to negotiate with Tade and his attorney and Tade had offered to change my immigration status as his wife which I had rejected. I was not fighting for immigration status but my life. I did not want to be with him anymore. I had suffered too much at his hands.
I returned to the shelter broken and dejected. I felt like justice did not take its course at the court house, partly, because I felt that my attorney did not do her homework properly. She barely cross examined the one who almost sent me to an early grave at my prime. She just treated the case like candy and cookies in the hands of toddlers.
At the shelter, I was made to understand that, I could still report the incident, especially, the rape aspect to the Crime Investigation Detective (CID). Becki, one of the shelter advocates called the Anoka Sheriff for the CID and detective Klossterman was sent to investigate the matter. The first time he visited the shelter for me was a Sunday but I was not there. I had gone to the shop. I will tell more about the shop, as that was where I worked later in this book. He left a message and promised to come back.
On Monday, he called and we agreed that he should come over to the shelter that morning. I poured my heart to detective Klossterman while he wrote and recorded with a mini tape recorder. He asked for Tade’s cell phone number and promised to call him to get his own side of the story.
I however received a letter from the Anoka County Attorney saying that a decision had been made not to “bring charges” against Tade. They thought that there was not enough evidence to prove my case. This decision, I believed, was due, largely to the fact that, I neither reported to the police nor went the hospital.
It was also in that letter from the county attorney that I found out that Tade had made a second false police report against me while I was already seeking refuge at the shelter. He had alleged that I was threatening to kill and tarnish his record here in the United States. It was part of his gimmick to taunt me with deportation.
I was further traumatized to know that Tade was head bent on ensuring that he molested me with the law, even, when I was already in transition to my freedom and sanity. I began to have nightmares and could not sleep at nights. At that point, I just prayed and hoped that the truth would prevail.
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