The real story of Emily Doe is appauling, sad, heroic and healing. You might not know her by her actual name, but you’ve heard of her by the pseudonym that she was given to protect her identity. Emily Doe was a young California woman who was raped by Stanford athlete Brock Turner, who was nearly spared of all consequences for the attack.
If it hadn’t been for the two Swedes, engineering students at Stanford who just happen to be leaving the party and walked by to hear and see Brock on top of an unconscious “Emily” behind a dumpster, Brock might’ve gotten off free and Emily’s life, the mayhem, the worldwide attention, a second chance, a memoir as a means to healing might’ve all been food for fodder.
However, he wasn’t spared and the truth of the story of Emily Doe came out, one horrific detail at a time in jam packed courthouse. The fate resting in the hands of twelve strangers to both the victim and attacker, the jury.
How the story plays out is nothing short of heinous and the irony is this is a story that is repeated far too often on college campuses across the nation.
She was sexually assaulted by Stanford athlete Brock Turner in 2016.
Her identity has remained anonymous until now. That’s because Emily Doe wants you to know her name. Her real name is Chanel Miller. And she details her account of the events that transpired in her memoir: Know My Name
The Privilege Of A White Ivy League Athlete
Why did Chanel Miller’s lawyers all of the sudden feel defensive? They found themselves justifying her over drinking and defending her actions as a young woman who was out of college perusing a college frat party. Why was she there? What were her motives? These were the sort of attacks leveled at Chanel and her legal council. Even suggesting she might be the predator?
Never alleging the star athlete who had a promising career that might’ve even lead him all the way to the olympics had any ill intent or malice. Just raping a woman who is unconscious was not enough. He was a good student, great athlete with great promise. That was the narrative for not only his defense, but a lot of articles that spent far too much time leaning into his athletic ability rather than the there counts of felony he was facing.
Chanel’s Victim Impact Statement
Chanel’s victim impact statement essentially amounts to the feelings and thoughts of being raped to be read aloud in court on the day of Brock’s sentencing. As a literary major Chanel felt compelled to pour pen to paper judiciously laying out all of her emotions one line at a time. The impact of her victim statement was felt the world over. It went viral and she became an overnight sensation of sorts, an advocate for other girls and women who had also been victim to rape.
Here are portions of her statement,
If it is all right, for the majority of this statement I would like to address the defendant directly. You don’t know me, but you’ve been inside me, and that’s why we’re here today……..
I shuffled from room to room with a blanket wrapped around me, pine needles trailing behind me, I left a little pile in every room I sat in. I was asked to sign papers that said “Rape Victim” and I thought something has really happened. My clothes were confiscated and I stood naked while the nurses held a ruler to various abrasions on my body and photographed them. The three of us worked to comb the pine needles out of my hair, six hands to fill one paper bag. To calm me down, they said it’s just the flora and fauna, flora and fauna. I had multiple swabs inserted into my vagina and anus, needles for shots, pills, had a nikon pointed right into my spread legs. I had long, pointed beaks inside me and had my vagina smeared with cold, blue paint to check for abrasions………”
Presiding Judge Persky And How California Law Changed
Judge Aaron Persky moments after Chanel read her impactful statement packed with punched commended her resilience. And then he turned to Brock and began commending him for what a good student and athlete he’d been. And the most shocking of all, handed down a 6 month sentence to Brock Turner for 3 felonies. I take it upon myself to say how appalling and unfair the system is to those who reign privilege all day every day. Had this been a black man with an illegal substance he would’ve gotten at least 3 years.
Brock would be out in 3 months for good behavior. 1 month for each felony is what he was awarded as a privileged member of our society.
This is how privilege works. Had he been a black athlete from Stanford, there is no denying the punishment would’ve been exponentially harsher.
Judge Aaron Persky was recalled after uproar over his unjust sentencing.
The law even changed after the trial. Enforcing stricter sentences for physical assault.
KNOW MY NAME | A MEMOIR
Years after the ordeal Chanel was sick of the trauma and the absurdity of her pseudonym that ultimately did little to protect her from her pain, trauma, and trolls. She decided to put her literary degree to work and pen a memoire of her experience titled Know My Name. She wanted the world to know the real story of Emily Doe.
Know My Name has been met by critical acclaim and Chanel continues to advocate on behalf of rape victims through her public speaking and literary work.