July 14, 2011
The ESPN sideline reporter isn't over the incident and knows she never will be. She's especially dreading the day her stalker is released from prison. (Michael David Barrett began serving a 30-month prison sentence last March.) "I'm being traumatized every single day for what he did," Andrews said after the sentencing. "This will never be over for me."
She tells interviewer Abigail Pesta about her plans to gain a copyright to the video, a move which would give her lawyers legal backing when they send cease and desist letters to websites that still post the clip. Evidently it takes the threat of litigation for websites to pull down an illicit video of a sexual crime.
The interview is worth a full read, particularly to hear Andrews' advice on steps to take to avoid becoming a stalking victim. She's fearful, yet brave; broken, but strong. Hers is both a heartbreaking and inspiring story. Some of the most interesting excerpts:
On seeing her stalker face-to-face in court:
It was awful. He ended up walking in right in front of us, and I started to hyperventilate. I looked at my dad and was like, "I can't breathe." My dad was a rock. I had these notes, and he goes, "Look down and concentrate on your notes." I looked down, and you could just hear teardrops hitting my paper. And it was funny, for a guy who stood behind a door and took this video of me and stalked me, he didn't look at me once in court. He couldn't look at me.
On returning to work after the tape was leaked but before the attacker was caught:
For the first few months, I didn't know if someone on my crew had done this to me; I didn't know if this person was still following me. I kept thinking he would jump out of the closet in the hotel. Honestly, I shouldn't have gone back so soon. I should have taken care of myself.
On why she continues to speak out about the incident:
At the time everything happened, I got a ton of letters from women who were stalking victims. People had set up video cameras in their homes, whether it was a neighbor or a handyman. The videos were on the Internet, and the women couldn't get them down or get these guys arrested. They said, "First, we want to welcome you to the sorority. But we also want to tell you to please fight this — you're our voice." I had to.
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