Justice Watch: And They Got Away With It (Part 4)

I recently watched "I Care . . . A Lot" the grift dramady on Netflix. Throughout the audience understands with the right alliances and a believable front anything is possible, I know as I survived a life-altering grift.

To this day, I still have trouble believing that a few good deeds would unleash a layered grift that would eventually lead to me fighting for my life, identity, career, and worse, having to come realization these grifters feeding on religious beliefs were simply looking for an easy target, and churches are fertile soil.

Without explanation, I have always identified with Christian doctrine. My involvement in a local inner-city church began in 1998. The reputation of the then marquee name had a storied history in the Christian community. Mile markers along the way seem to align with legitimacy. Towards the end, his attempts to raise monies seemed shady.

A little more than one year later, the church had announced plans to takes teams to war torn Kosovo and Macedonia for humanitarian aid. I felt led to go and then discovered participants paid a particular sum each to cover expenses.

The King's Ransom

I had also begun working at a Wall Street law firm, and with the Balkans War on the front page, of every major newspaper, securing funding from individual contributors was easier than I expected. By the end I had secured enough to fund two trips. To me, it seemed like a clear indication that this was the right direction. Even more, I received additional donations of toys for orphans from a partner whose children wanted to help.

I was not naïve; I understood the media presence and the horror stories of truth in The Balkans were the motivation for the support. And I was grateful.

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The monies collected were turned into the sponsoring organization, which is where the story takes a disastrous turn. I suppose, in retrospect, when the Missions Department Assistant remarked on the amount of money, as I turned in the funding in the way in which it was received, individually, instead of covering the identities of the contributors, the outcome may have been different.

It's spilled milk, as the facts are what they are. And it became more like the King's ransom. That I had somehow discovered the key to the inner chamber and as she said flipping through the checks, "Aren't you the little fundraiser. I'll have to tell the pastors about this."

When I asked "Why?" she explained, "They're always looking for sponsors." Which again did not sit well. As I did not want to mix my employment with the church. She also explained she would be moving to Florida to work in a ministry organization.

The trip was more than I had expected. I thought I had met likeminded people, individuals of faith, sincere, honest. Unfortunately, and while I didn't see it right away, the next phase of the grift was also on the trip. And she was skilled.

Enter The Grifter

A grifter extraordinaire. She played every card, and she was a master. She was friendly, outgoing, talented, and even possessed a sympathy card which she attributed to a miraculous healing of a benign, inoperable brain tumor. She was an encourager, and I believe she was a friend. Little did I realize it was simply the necessary steps she used to lure me into her snare for the kill.

She played on the similarities we shared. Both creatives, she was an encourager. Gifted with a stunning operatic voice, I could never understand why she didn't use her talent. She was clearly more gifted, I felt and as I would come to understand much later her acting talents were also exemplary. As Christians, she used the faith to skillfully extract the innermost desires of the soul. She seemed genuine. I still have many pictures where she threw her arms around me when someone pointed the camera towards us.

After the trip, which I believed cemented a lasting friendship, and not simply a seasonal friendship, the façade cracked a little once we returned. I discovered she worked for a law firm in the same building where I also worked. I stopped by one day and her greeting surprised me, as she said, "Janet, what are you doing here?" Not hello, good to see you. She reacted as if a pariah had arrived. I rationalized this action with compartmentalization.

It wasn't long before the firm she worked for left the building.

Lured Like Skyler Ness

Life went on and two years later, my then roommate, who also attended the same inner-city church asked me to move out. It was January 2000. It wasn't instantaneous. She gave me notice and by this time, the grifter and I were still in contact, and she explained she and her mother bought a house together and they had plenty of room and were renting rooms to supplement the costs.

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We discussed the possibilities of the situation not working out, as I had felt a certain coolness from her mother. I knew within three months this situation would not work out, as the mother was noticeably clear, to the point of verbalizing "this isn't working out."

Without explaining that her daughter had made a verbal agreement, I felt hoodwinked. At times we find people live differently than we assume from the façade we see, and often layer with our own beliefs of lifestyles. I couldn't believe they lived in the way in which they lived. In retrospect, there is a real possibility they lived in the filth as a ploy to build dissatisfaction. Which it did.

Man, Were they Good

And of course, they had a solution. Little did I know it was part of the plan to lure me into a situation where I would be vulnerable for violence and my personal property stolen and exposed.

They introduced me to a friend, another law firm employee, allegedly had the same religious beliefs, also owned a condo, in financial need, and had a loft space the size of a small apartment, a large sleeping area/living room, a bath and two large walk-in closets. The rent was reasonable. I never considered the possibilities of the horror and crippling long-term effects that would happen. I didn't expect people to be innately evil.

Before move-in, I noticed the homeowner had a fascination with serial killers and two bookshelves in the loft dedicated to books written about famous serial killers. I did ask her to remove about a dozen of the books.

As it was after move-in the grifter and I parted ways, with limited contact. A few times they would join me at dinner, at a local diner, before church. And I had limited contact with the homeowner, we each worked at different law firms and on different shifts. It seemed perfect.

Living in a loft space, with no physical boundary, no door to access which mentally is a designated barrier, any person entering the home could access the space without a mental trigger of trespassing.

Psychopath Emboldened

I had no knowledge of any agreements the homeowner made with the grifter or any third parties. What I know are the facts.

The homeowner explained one day that a female from Florida, the grifter's mother had brought to her attention and was in need, would be moving-in. She also explained, "God had not gifted her in the looks department." The two became fast friends, comrades, partners in crime.

Without visually witnessing the crimes, I can only explain what I survived and experienced. It is important to note, I have journals from this time, extensive day to day entries.

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I casually noticed things out of place in the loft. So subtle that one had to consider if one's mind were playing tricks on them, did I move this or that? Was it misplaced? Then the more obvious, blinds and window open.

One morning I woke and had a deep black bruise on my inner arm, the bruise was so black that I know I would have remembered the experience that caused it. Only there was no accident, no fall, for a bruise of that magnitude and discoloration, it would have had to been serious. This is the event that I mark as the beginning of the homeowner and whomever she partnered with to find a way, unbeknownst to me, to force a dosage of GHB.

During this time, I also remembering waking early to hear the homeowner saying, "if we are going to do this, we will need a place to meet."

As many victims of sexual violence, the choice becomes absorb it, report it and lose everything, career assassination, bankruptcy, loss of income, a downward spiral of destruction brought on by the violence and viciousness of others in power and the failure of the judicial system.

I chose to absorb it until I couldn't and I naively expected justice. I lived an unimpeachable life, to me, an untrained investigator, the homeowner, and the Florida roommate had some level of culpability. And to complete someone's else end game, they could each have become romantically involved with the other, I had no way of knowing and clearly did not care.

Grand Central Station

One night, I woke and saw a law firm female employee in my apartment, I said, "Julie, what are you doing here." She replied, "Stealing something for (Partner's Name)." I remember nothing else.

On a separate occasion, I woke to see the marquee named reverend standing over my bed, I brushed away his finger from my mouth.

The weeks following the choice to absorb it was followed by statements at the law firm by various employees, "the body is not meant for that," "There were three of us up there that night."

And when I finally reported the crimes to the proper authorities and secured all evidentiary measures to ensure justice, I walked into the condo and the homeowner said, "I don't know why she reported this rape when she didn't report the others."

What followed is obvious, known and repeated to many different law enforcement agencies, media and in various forms of written statements.

They Erased Me Like I Never Existed

My foundation, the investment in my future, my education, all destroyed. Three days after I reported the law firm to the NY State Attorney General's Office, I received notice of termination.

On the immediate, the law firm terminated my employment, without assistance, indicating I had refused to reply to a Family Medical Leave form in which the HR Administration had already signed. And they didn't even offer assistance to navigate the judicial system, to assist in any means, on any level. They erased me like I never existed.

The church called the police on me to have me removed from the facility. They erased me like I never existed.

No attorney would take my case, one firm even lied and said I didn't show for an appointment that they refused to extend.

By January of the following year, I had been forced out of my city of choice and had no alternative but to return to my hometown. While watching MTV, I sat watching a video of a shooting star female singer and realized what she was singing, her lyrics, sounded like my poetry and other's writings, many of which were completed while I worked at the law firm and all were stored, on paper in a filing cabinet in my then home.

This has become their glory days. And it's worse. In the years since the violence, I have fought against the Hudson County Judicial system, which has built a cement barrier, even to the point of negating the crimes who also erased me like I never existed.

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Victim Shaming 

This, essentially is the tip of the iceberg, and leaves speculation on motive, simple hate, intellectual property, law firm lunacy, circumvented entertainment deals, a hundred and one evil possibilities and the facts remain clear, the crime occurred, the necessary evidence is available to ensure justice and the governing judicial system has bowed to someone or something and had from the beginning refused any additional contact, erasing me like I never existed.

Of course, victims are always negated, it is never "that way" even when irrefutable documentation and evidence paves a clear road. Although they are usually left to struggle back on their own and not stalked or repeatedly terrorized at future employment positions if they are even able to secure anything.

In this situation the illusion of power possibly clouded the minds of the detectives and it is possible the grifter's used the circumvent, a sleight of hand, every conniving, cheating trick in the depths of the imagination to stop the detectives from moving forward.

Either way two roommates, an open loft space, and GHB, it doesn't take a brain surgeon to form a conclusion add the evidence and it's hard to believe two experienced detectives couldn't make an arrest.

I guess everyone is blinded by the bright lights of Manhattan.


Justice Watch: And They Got Away With It - The Victim X Story, is the third installment of a series of articles detailing the breakdown of the justice system when power and privilege clash.

Justice Watch and The Victim X Story are the property of Janet Walker.

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