Two arrests have been made in the rape of Jada*, a 16-year-old Texas girl who was assaulted earlier this year, according to an interview she and Black Panther Party activist Quanell X gave to MSNBC's Ronan Farrow.
Her sexual assault went viral over the summer, and she decided to speak out by telling her story to the media. She stated that while at a party, she was drugged, raped and videotaped. Not too soon after, the photos and video had made its way to social media, where she was taunted, teased and blamed for her own attack.
She recently told Farrow, "I would like to see justice. Justice in full effect and that's it."
Quanell X also hopes that the media attention and Twitter hashtag in support of Jada, #IAmJada, will encourage lawmakers to do more to protect victims against cyberbullying.
“I believe that we’re attempting to work with state legislatures right here in Texas to make cyber bullying a crime," he said. "Because you have so many people out there who are victims of sexual assault but they don’t want to be bullied through social media, so they tend to keep their stories to themselves and never come forth."
He added, "We don’t want to allow social media, which has been a gift and a curse in many cases, to stop victims from speaking up about being a victim of a sexual assault or a crime."
Jada admitted that gaining support from her peers hasn't been easy. She said, “From my community, there's very little support still, such as the teenagers, but as adults, they're very supportive. And people outside of my community are very supportive."
Yet, she is still optimistic about her future.
“I would like to keep working on this with others, other people who are going through this in the near future. But I would like to go to college and then become a pharmacist.”
*Editor’s Note: Normally news outlets do not share or publish the names of rape victims as a means of protecting their identity. However, “Jada” and her mother gave the news consent to use her first name when reporting on her story.
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