Trigger: SA. Graphic violence, explicit language.
I wasn’t going to share any stories in detail, but after finding out through some “Me Too” stories/posts that someone I would’ve considered a good friend of mine is a predator and that a lot of my female friends have been through similar experiences, I figured that it might be helpful for me to share.
- Tanner Barker
- Ryan Griggs
(I have other experiences, but these three are the most relevant/recent. Other names that come to mind are Austin Fizer, Nick Gravely, Thayne Nielsen, and Wayne Townsend).
- 2016- Tanner was a friend of mine I met through working in the addiction recovery field. He was going through a super rough time in his life, so I let him borrow my guitar. After a few months, I asked for it back and drove to Utah county to pick it up. We met in a parking lot, and he asked if he could sit in my car and talk with me. Of course I was like, “Sure.”
I was thinking we’d just catch up, but he kept steering the conversation towards sex. He said, “After you have sex with someone, don’t you ever just think about it a lot and really want to do it again?” (We’d already slept together). I said no and changed the subject, but again he was like, “Because I really think about fucking you a lot.” I changed the subject again.
While I was talking, the strap of my dress slipped off my shoulder, so I fixed it. He reached over and said, “No, I like it there.” I said that I didn’t and tried to fix it again, but he plunged his hand down my dress and started kissing me. I pulled away and said, “Tanner no,” but he kept his hands on me, so I shoved him away, reached over, opened his door, and said I had to go to work.
On his way out he said, “See ya never” and slammed my car door shut.
- 2015- I met Ryan online. We talked for awhile and since we lived so close to each other, we figured it would be cool to hang out. I went to his house, and we listened to music. He played his guitar, and we watched tv. At one point, he asked what I would do if he kissed me, and I said I probably wouldn’t like it. After that, he kept telling me he wanted to kiss me, and I got creeped out. I said I was going to go home, and as I walked toward the door, he got in front of me, pulled me into him tightly, and kissed me.
It’s hard to explain why this scared me so much. He just had this look in his eye that was similar to hunger. Like I could tell that he wasn’t seeing me as a person anymore. He was also a lot bigger than me.
I pushed him away, and he started apologizing. I told him that I was going to walk home, and he said he’d come with me. I said I didn’t want him to and that I wanted to be alone, but he followed me anyway. About halfway home, I started running, and he ran with me. He said something along the lines of, “Why are we running?” and smiled at me. At this point I was fucking terrified, so I just acted like everything was cool until I got to my house.
- 2011- I went to a gathering in Clearfield at my friend’s boyfriend’s cousin’s house. We were the only girls there, and everyone else was in their early to mid twenties. We were both 17 at the time.
There was this one guy in particular who kept flashing his dick at me when no one else was looking and tried to separate me from my friend. He also pulled my pants down and laughed after I screamed and scrambled to get them back up. He never introduced himself. All I remember was that everyone was calling him “Wes.”
Towards the end of the night we were all watching a movie, and one by one, each guy went to a different room to fall asleep until my friend’s boyfriend took her downstairs, and it was just me and Wes.
He sat down next to me and put his arm around my shoulders then started kissing me. I thought at the time that maybe if I played along for a second, he’d leave me alone. We could make out, and it could just be making out.
He started kissing me more aggressively and shoved his hand down my pants. When I tried to pull his hand away, he pressed harder. He pushed me back and got on top of me. I said, “No,” and tried to push him off, but he ignored me and proceeded to rape me. It was at this point, that I dissociated for the first time. I felt like I was watching everything happen from the ceiling.
At one point during the rape, one of his friends walked into the room, so I yelled, “Get off of me!” His friend turned around and went back to bed.
After he was done, he went to the kitchen, and my friend came up from the basement to cover me up and help me get clothed. I remember crying and telling her over and over again that I wasn’t a slut and not to tell anyone. She said she knew and that the same thing had just happened to her. When Wes came back into the living room, he asked me how old I was. When I said I was 17, he said, “Oh shit, am I a bad person?” I said no.
My friend ended up telling my dad who made me go to the police a few days later. I filed a police report and pointed out the house it happened at. When it was all said and done, the police told my dad that I started it and that they basically didn’t consider it a rape.