Chessy Prout, the Woman at the Center of the Prep School Rape Case, Wants To Inspire Other Survivors
Chessy Prout said in the interview that by coming forward, she hopes to inspire other sexual assault survivors to tell their stories. Prout previously testified at Labrie's trial, but remained anonymous.
"I feel ready to stand up and own what happened to me," Prout told "TODAY" show host Savannah Guthrie. "And I'm going to make sure that other people, other girls and other boys, know that they can own it too, and that they don’t have to be ashamed."
Labrie was accused of raping Prout in 2014 when she was 15, reportedly as part of a "Senior Salute" tradition where senior boys attempt to have sex with underclassmen. He was convicted of misdemeanor sexual assault, but was acquitted of more serious felony sexual assault charges. Labrie was sentenced to one year in prison, but was released after serving two months.
The outcome of the trial is part of a gross pattern of light sentences for white men accused of rape — former Stanford student Brock Turner will be released from jail this week after serving just three months for assaulting a passed-out woman, and 18-year-old David Becker received probation and no jail time after sexually assaulting two unconscious women at a house party in April. Becker's attorney said that the sentence would allow him to "go onto the next step of his life," and get the "college experience."
In her interview, Prout said she was disgusted by Labrie's verdict.
"He definitely did do it knowingly," Prout said. "The fact that he was still able to pull the wool over a group of people's eyes disgusted me."
After Prout returned to St. Paul's and received backlash from fellow students, she left. Her family filed a civil suit against the school for not "meeting its most basic obligation to protect children entrusted to its care." The school denies a culture or tradition of sexual assault at St. Paul's, but says Prout's story has brought about positive changes on campus.
Prout hopes to continue to empower others to be autonomous over their own bodies; she started a trending campaign with another survivor under the hashtag, #IHaveTheRightTo, to inspire survivors to share their stories and not feel ashamed or silenced.
— Meghan Harvey (@Meghan_Harvey) August 30, 2016
— Kimya Forouzan (@kimyaf) August 30, 2016
"I hope he learns. I hope he gets help," Prout said of Labrie. "Because if he doesn't learn, he will do it to another young woman."
More From Glamour:
• What Brock Turner Should Have Said in His Letter to the Judge in the Stanford Rape Case
• This Woman's Letter Reveals Everything That's Wrong With How the Law Handles Sexual Assault
• Lady Gaga Releases Music Video About Campus Sexual Assault
• What We Still Get Wrong About College Sexual Assault
Photo Credit: Courtesy of the "TODAY" Show