Denied Justice

‘I was just lost in the dark’

Women describe their experiences reporting sexual assaults to police in Minnesota – and how that has affected their lives.

HEAR THEIR STORIES

Warning: May contain explicit content

Haleigh Ortmeier-Clarke
Katie Finch
Andrea Gram
Melissa “Rabbitt” Miyashiro
Abby Honold
Alissa Lien
Cherrelle McGowan
Brooke Morath
Sarah Ortega
Florkime Paye
Emily Schlecht
Melody Walton
Wendy Cushing
Amber Mansfield
Joanna Howe
Heather Vande Kieft

The suspect in this case denied the allegations to the police.

The suspect in this case was not interviewed by police.

The suspect in this case was interviewed by police; the investigator declined to submit the case for charging.

The suspect in this case denied the allegations to police.

The man who raped Honold, Daniel Drill-Mellum, pleaded guilty and was sentenced to six years in prison

The suspect in this case denied the allegations to the police.

Following inquiries from the Star Tribune, police reopened this case.

The suspect in this case denied the allegations to police.

The suspect in this case would not discuss the allegations with police, but denied them to the Star Tribune.

The suspect in this case denied the allegations to police.

The suspect in this case denied the allegations to police.

The suspect in this case would not discuss the allegations with police.

The suspect in this case was not interviewed by police.

Roseville police never interviewed the suspect. Lyft confirmed that it fired the driver after Howe reported what had occurred.

The suspect denied the rape and told police the sex was consensual.

Haleigh Ortmeier-Clarke

“The police officer told me that I must come in for an interrogation. Not an interview, an interrogation.”

Haleigh Ortmeier-Clarke

“The police officer told me that I must come in for an interrogation. Not an interview, an interrogation.”

Katie Finch

“If something else happened I don’t know if I’d bother to report it.”

Katie Finch

“If something else happened I don’t know if I’d bother to report it.”

Andrea Gram

“I still feel fear just leaving my apartment.”

Andrea Gram

“I still feel fear just leaving my apartment.”

Melissa Miyashiro

“This is exactly why women don’t come forward. This is exactly why women don’t report rape and sexual violence.”

Melissa “Rabbitt” Miyashiro

“This is exactly why women don’t come forward. This is exactly why women don’t report rape and sexual violence.”

Abby Honold

“On campus I was ... a pariah.”

Abby Honold

“On campus I was ... a pariah.”

Alissa Lien

“I didn’t feel like I was a human being. I didn’t feel like I was listened to or respected or believed.”

Alissa Lien

“I didn’t feel like I was a human being. I didn’t feel like I was listened to or respected or believed.”

Cherrelle McGowan

“I felt like ending my life when it happened. I just wanted to die. But I didn’t. I just try to keep living.”

Cherrelle McGowan

“I felt like ending my life when it happened. I just wanted to die. But I didn’t. I just try to keep living.”

Brooke Morath

“It’s a terrifying, humiliating and defeating feeling. It shouldn’t be this hard for a victim.”

Brooke Morath

“It’s a terrifying, humiliating and defeating feeling. It shouldn’t be this hard for a victim.”

Sarah Ortega

“Being asked questions like why didn’t I scream, it makes you question, why didn’t I scream?”

Sarah Ortega

“Being asked questions like why didn’t I scream, it makes you question, why didn’t I scream?”

Florkime Paye

“I lost friends of a decade because they knew him and they wanted to believe him.”

Florkime Paye

“I lost friends of a decade because they knew him and they wanted to believe him.”

Emily Schlecht

“Nobody teaches you how to be a victim. Nobody teaches you what you have to do in that situation.”

Emily Schlecht

“Nobody teaches you how to be a victim. Nobody teaches you what you have to do in that situation.”

Melody Walton

“All of the little things that they could have done better, or could have done at all.”

Melody Walton

“All of the little things that they could have done better, or could have done at all.”

Wendy Cushing

“Nobody had my back, nobody protected me, nobody looked out for my best interests and I felt alone. I felt scared.”

Wendy Cushing

“Nobody had my back, nobody protected me, nobody looked out for my best interests and I felt alone. I felt scared.”

Amber Mansfield

“To them I was probably just some crack whore.”

Amber Mansfield

“To them I was probably just some crack whore.”

Joanna Howe

“How could I consent if I don’t remember anything?”

Joanna Howe

“How could I consent if I don’t remember anything?”

Heather Vande Kieft

“I remember they were all laughing. I remember saying no.”

Heather Vande Kieft

“I remember they were all laughing. I remember saying no.”

  • Haleigh Ortmeier-Clarke
  • Katie Finch
  • Andrea Gram
  • Melissa “Rabbitt” Miyashiro
  • Abby Honold
  • Alissa Lien
  • Cherrelle McGowan
  • Brooke Morath
  • Sarah Ortega
  • Florkime Paye
  • Emily Schlecht
  • Melody Walton
  • Wendy Cushing
  • Amber Mansfield
  • Joanna Howe
  • Heather Vande Kieft