News

From consensual sex to violent rape: How police let me down

Sydney writer Lauren Ingram has decided to go public with the details of her rape. Picture: Lauren Ingram
Sydney writer Lauren Ingram has decided to go public with the details of her rape. Picture: Lauren Ingram

I WILL always remember April 25, 2015. The day I was raped.

But what has brought almost as much pain as the violent abuse I was subjected to that night is how the institutions that claim to care about violence against women let me down when I reported what happened to me.

I met the man who raped me only a couple of months after I moved to Sydney. I didn't know very many people in the city and he was friendly, both online and off. I considered us friends, and he was a member of the NSW Greens and other progressive circles people I knew were a part of.

On Anzac Day I had been out socialising with friends and he messaged me, inviting me to hang out at his house and have pizza. I arrived, we ate and had a drink. Then he started kissing me.

The sex started out as consensual. But then quickly he started to get rough. I said "ow" and he kept going. I told him to stop, please, and he held me down, bit me and hit me.

When he was done, I got up, shaking. He was suddenly angry again, asking me where I was going. I said to the bathroom, where I sat for a minute and tried to work out what to do. I came out and he was waiting by the door, telling me to come back to bed. I lay awake, terrified, for the next several hours, trying to work out how to escape.

When the sun rose I said I had to leave. He said we should "do this again some time". I got in an Uber home and cried, wanting to go home and scrub my skin until I couldn't feel his touch anymore.

Some of Lauren Ingram’s injuries after her rape. Picture: Lauren IngramSource:Supplied
Some of Lauren Ingram’s injuries after her rape. Picture: Lauren IngramSource:Supplied

Despite my trauma, I was a "good" victim. I went to the police only weeks after I was raped. The first officer I spoke to, a young man at the North Sydney station, was kind and professional. But the matter was referred to the station closest to where I was assaulted, and I was assigned a male detective who made me feel even worse.

The first time I met with the detective, to do a formal interview, he told me my rapist was "just a kid who didn't know how to have sex yet". He treated me like I didn't matter, like somehow I could have prevented this from happening.

In February this year I found out my rapist was employed by the party, and working in a position that meant he had contact with young female volunteers. I was terrified, and incredibly worried that he would target someone else.

So I made an official complaint to the NSW Greens about his behaviour. Initially, the woman who I was in contact with was very kind and empathetic. She told me that four other women had made complaints about the same man, ranging from sexual harassment to sexual assault. The party suspended his membership while an "investigation" was ongoing, but the man left the state when questioned and the matter didn't progress.

Despite how difficult it was, I did what victims are told they should do. I went to the police, I reported the man to his political party. Yet he was protected and I was ignored.

Since I decided to go public with what happened to me on social media, I have been contacted by five other women who were harassed or assaulted by the man who raped me. Some have said they complained to the Young Greens about his behaviour six years ago and were ignored. That many women in the party have been worried about him being an abuser for some time.

Nothing can take back what happened to me. I bear the trauma as best I can, trying to move on with my life. But in the back of my mind I wonder about the other victims out there, the women who he has also attacked, and the ones he may target in the future.

The systems failed me and the only thing I can now do is expose my pain to the world in the hope something will change.

If this story has brought up anything for you, contact 1800 Respect on 1800 737 732 or Lifeline on 13 11 14.

News Corp Australia

Topics:  editors picks new south wales greens new south wales police rape



CRINGE: Gladstone's grossest bond clean horror stories

Hands of female cleaner using spray stains remover

A sea of nappies, a honey pot of poo and toilet training gone wrong.

Pub worker jailed for $49,882 Centrelink scam

BEHIND BARS: Justin Stevens in happier times at the Biloela Hotel.

34-year-old caught out rorting carer payments in 2013.

Local Partners

Uncharted: The Lost Legacy a slick, impressive effort

New Uncharted game for PS4 hits the shelves

Bride and Prejudice's Chris reveals more family heartache

Grant and Chris feature on the TV series Bride & Prejudice. Supplied by Channel 7.

His dad’s health has dealt a massive blow to their happy life

Nicole's ready to bust out of Doctor Doctor's love triangle

Nicole da Silva stars in season two of Doctor Doctor.

New season gets a fresh injection of relationship dilemmas.

MOVIE REVIEW: Tom Cruise flying high again in drug drama

Tom Cruise plays pilot Barry Seal in the movie American Made.

FILM STAR delivers his best performance in some time.

The Project will now be on six nights a week

The Project presenters Waleed Aly, Carrie Bickmore and Peter Helliar.

The Project is expanding with a Sunday night edition and a new host.

Click your fingers, tap your toes

Helen Peters, Elisabeth Wallis-Gaedtke, Evalee Sharples and Kemal Avunduk rehearse for Fascinating Rhythm, Sunshine Coast Oriana Choir's performance of hot jazz, sizzling samba, Latin beats and smooth swing sounds at Lake Kawana Community Centre on August 26-27.

Libby to set beat for Fascinating Rhythm this weekend

Margot Robbie is unrecognisable in London

Margot, is that really you?

MARGOT Robbie looks completely unrecognisable as Queen Elizabeth I.

REVEALED: New shops for Coast centre's $12million revamp

Coast retail centre expands as part of $12million refurbishment

Residents fear sand mine sell out by State Minister

Sand mine opponents attend the Nambour Council Chambers.Cou

Further testing undertaken on site, despite claims of significance

Investors quick to snap up property in key growth corridor

High-profile commercial site sells at auction for $4.920m

EXPLAINED: What the 'Costco effect' means for Ipswich

PRICE WARS: A Costco store similar to this one in Canberra, is planned for Ipswich.

Exclusive 'cult' about to change how families do grocery shopping