When you think of cruising to the Bahamas, you think of sun, electric blue drinks, and fighting for lounge chairs on the lido deck. Unfortunately, after reading this story, you may never look at cruises the same again. A 15-year-old girl aboard a four-day Carnival cruise from Miami was allegedly raped by 31-year-old Casey Dickerson and a room full of teenage boys. The details are, well, horrifying. It's the kind of case that makes you want all the wrong-doers to be punished to the fullest extent of the law, and then some.
The girl, whose identity and reason for being on the ship has not yet been released, claims that she went to a room with a 15-year-old male friend that turned out to be a spare room that Dickerson had keys to. Once inside the cabin, the girl's friend was locked in the bathroom while Dickerson and four teenage boys raped her. She claims that they were encouraging each other to switch positions while they had their way with her. When they were done, the girl got dressed and was allowed to leave.
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And thank goodness she knew what to do once she was released. Sounds like she headed straight for the doctor's office, spoke up about what happened, and was given a rape kit. Carnival then contacted the FBI.
While this is a tragedy beyond words, it's heartening to know that this young 15-year-old girl who was just gang raped had the wherewithal and the knowledge to seek help, and the resources with which to do so. Had she not spoken up about the horror she endured, Dickerson may never have been caught and been placed behind bars in a Florida cell. The girl knew just what to do in order to punish her abusers -- get help and get evidence.
When 54 percent of sexual assault cases go unreported, it's encouraging to hear that this brave girl stood up for herself. She could have easily been in the majority and kept the brutal assault to herself, but I'm so happy, for her sake, that she did the right thing and sought aid.
The teenage boys allege that Dickerson forced them to have sex with the girl, but so far, no charges have been brought against them. Dickerson says that he was drunk and passed out in that cabin and that nothing sexual happened in there. However, he does admit to having sex on the boat with other women who were not his wife.
What do you think of this story?
Photo via fifthworldart/Flickr