Christine Blasey Ford, who accused Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh of sexual assault, has had her story corroborated by four people, per USA Today. Blasey Ford’s lawyers had each of her corroborators swear and sign accounts in which Blasey Ford opened up to them about Kavanaugh’s assault on her. Blasey Ford’s accusation states that Kavanaugh assaulted her while the two were in high school, attempting to pull off her clothing and trap her in a bedroom.
The declarations will be sent to the Senate Judiciary Committee and used in Kavanaugh’s hearing on Thursday to determine whether he will move forward in his nomination. Blasey Ford’s supporters include her husband and three friends whom she has known for upwards of five years, and each has spoken with her, in different instances, about her assault. Per the declarations themselves, here’s what you need to know about each one.
Blasey Ford’s first corroborator is her husband. He recalls Blasey Ford bringing up her history of sexual assault a few times throughout their marriage in varying degrees. The first time Blasey Ford confided in her husband was around the time of their marriage, though “she did not provide details.” She was only able to discuss what actually happened in a couples therapy session in 2012. In this session, Blasey Ford said that in high school, she was locked in a room by two boys. One watched while the other molested her. She was able to escape the attack, but Blasey Ford and her husband reportedly spoke at length about how it affected her.
She would later reveal Kavanaugh’s name, as well as his background as a lawyer. He came up again when Trump revealed Kavanaugh as part of the short list for potential Supreme Court nominations. After a long period of Blasey Ford wrestling with herself over whether she should come forward, her husband reports that she believed reporting the assault to be her civic duty.
Koegler, a friend of the Fords, has known the family for five years. In that time, the families vacationed together and their children were on the same baseball team. Koegler recalls the first time Blasey Ford brought up her assault in 2016, prior to the underwhelming sentence of Stanford University student Brock Turner, who was convicted of raping an unconscious woman on campus. According to Koegler, Blasey Ford was especially frustrated by the sentencing because of a personal experience. She confided to Koegler that her abuser “was now a federal judge in Washington, D.C.”
Blasey Ford did not bring up her assault again until the Supreme Court vacancy. She emailed Koegler that Trump’s “favorite for SCOTUS” was Brett Kavanaugh.
Gilda-Mazzon, who considers herself a good friend of Blasey Ford, has known her for ten years. Gilda-Mazzon reports a 2013 meeting at a restaurant in which Blasey Ford recounted her assault. Blasey Ford confided that she was struggling with the experience of being trapped in a room with two boys and “almost being raped” by someone who was now a federal judge. Blasey Ford also mentioned that the attack has impacted her life “ever since.” Gilda-Mazzon got in touch with Blasey Ford’s lawyers after reading her Washington Post report.
White recalls Blasey Ford recounting the assault in 2017 and has known Blasey Ford for six years. The two women are neighbors and their children attend the same elementary school. After reading a blog post in which White came forward about her own sexual assault, Blasey Ford opened up about her own experience, describing being nearly raped as a teen and that “her assailant was now a federal judge.”
Together, these accounts paint the picture of the trauma Blasey Ford has experienced. As Kavanaugh’s hearing lurks closer and closer, and the reality of his coming into power becomes more and more plausible, they’re regretfully necessary. If Kavanaugh is voted onto the Supreme Court, his actions could reverberate for generations, hurting even more women. To create the change and eventually reach a point that society simply believes survivors when they have the strength to come forward, allies must continue to step up.
The result of Kavanaugh’s Supreme Court nomination will speak volumes about how much progress the U.S. has really made. With the country’s eyes on Kavanaugh, the Senate will decide if we stand for victims or abusers.
To read the accounts yourself, check them out here (via The Huffington Post).