‘I lost trust in myself and people. I live in fear’

The rape victim’s impact statement detailed how she had always preferred her own company and she had no words to describe the impact the rape had on her life.

“It was an invasion of my privacy. I feel vulnerable.

“The word sex did not exist when I was growing up. Being my age, it is hard to break this taboo. I would rather be silent and forget what happened. I want to live in the present and get on with my life, but I need to break through the taboos, embarrassment, and shame.

“The broken being inside does not stop screaming in fear. I need to be rescued from drowning in the aftermath,” the woman said.

She said her life had been shattered and turned upside down.

She described feeling like a child in the wilderness, with nowhere to go, “having been sexually abused, terrified and in pain”.

She said she was fearful, felt stripped-naked and defiled and not well enough to live alone, “yet my offender walked free”.

She described her home as her “Irish paradise” and felt she owed to it herself to work towards reclaiming it.

“I lost the trust in myself and in people. I live in fear,” she said, before she added that she felt danger when someone called to her home.

“My body feels like it is on constant alert. A sudden noise, if a young man with dark hair or a hood passes by, my body tenses.

“I have to look the other way or cross the road, focus on my breathing, telling myself I am safe.

“I still see quite often, in the corner of my right eye, the slim, black-masked figure standing behind me. I have not managed to ignore it. I wish I was invisible,” the woman continued.

She said she felt sorry for Hussey’s parents and concluded that she was grateful for having been given a voice.

“I hope to get some closure today and to begin again and rebuild my life.”


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