Daisy Coleman, a survivor of sexual abuse and the star of Netflix documentary ‘Audrie & Daisy’, has died by suicide at the age of 23.
Coleman’s mother Melinda Coleman confirmed her daughter’s death in an emotional Facebook post.
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“She was my best friend and amazing daughter... I wish I could have taken the pain from her! She never recovered from what those boys did to her and it’s just not fair. My baby girl is gone,” she wrote.
Coleman was allegedly raped while at a party in Missouri in 2012 at the age of 14. The ordeal was also reportedly recorded on a phone. After the attack, she was left outside in just a T-shirt in freezing temperatures, reports said.
She accused Matthew Barnett, who was 17 at the time, of raping her. Barnett admitted having sex with Coleman but said it was consensual.
Barnett pleaded guilty in January 2014 to a misdemeanour child endangerment charge and was sentenced to two years of probation and a four-month suspended jail term.
Coleman would go on to co-found the organisation SafeBAE, which is aims to end sexual assault on students and help survivors.
“We are shattered and shocked by her passing from suicide,” SafeBAE wrote in a statement on Twitter. “She had been in EMDR therapy for 2 years, working on her triggers and healing from the many traumas in her life. She had many coping demons and had been facing and overcoming them all, but as many of you know, healing is not a straight path or any easy one. She fought longer and harder than we will ever know. But we want to be mindful of all the young survivors who looked up to her. Please know that above ALL ELSE, she did this work for you.”
Coleman appeared in the 2016 Netflix documentary ‘Audrie & Daisy,’ which followed her and her family as they dealt with her assault and the hostile reaction of the Maryville community to her allegations. She acknowledged in online comments that she had tried to commit suicide at least twice before.
The other girl featured in the documentary, 15-year-old Audrie Pott, died by suicide days after she said she was sexually assaulted by three boys in September 2012 in Sarasota, California.
— With inputs from AP