FORT LEE, VA (WWBT) - We have an update to an alleged rape of a civilian woman at Fort Lee.
You may recall our On Your Side Investigation from earlier this year. Fort Lee immediately investigated the rape allegation, but the U.S. Army Sergeant was never prosecuted, because he committed suicide.
The woman Called 12 to tell her story after she says Fort Lee refused to pay her hospital bills and counseling, after promising it would.
A check-up on the young woman at the center of this chilling story reveals she needs therapy, but doesn't have the money to pay for counseling. On Monday, Fort Lee again pointed to a law that allows it to deny services to sexual assault victims who are civilians.
But Kimberly says she won't go away. She basically self counsels, now. Her happy moments last about the length of time it takes to snap a picture of a supportive boyfriend.
Kimberly Cary says, "At points, I feel like have come that far... but one thing that clicks in my head will push me 50 steps back."
Self counseling is problematic. The benefits are short term, and Kimberly says are ineffective at keeping her mental anguish at bay for very long.
She adds, "It makes me want to puke. The nightmares. I feel like I'm waking up and it's so real. I can feel him on top of me. It's just sickening."
But Kimberly says a trip last month to Florida to see for herself where her rapist is buried did bring some closure. She gave me a copy of a letter she left on the grave of Sgt. Jacknael Abdiel Vazquez.
"I addressed it to 'A coward.' 'My rapist,'" she says. "Because of what you did, I can call you my rapist. My dead rapist. I just have a lot of anger still in me, and not being able to see justice done the correct way, seeing him in court and having that guilty verdict."
Kimberly says the U.S. Army Ranger raped her at Fort Lee last October. Fort Lee's own final report found probable cause to believe a rape had occurred, but it says Kimberly is a civilian and it's only by law required to refer non-military victims other places for help. Fort Lee says it did.
Kimberly adds, "I'm getting debt collectors calling me. Bills on top of bills. You can't put me in debt like this. It's not my fault. So now you're messing with my credit too."
The Virginia Criminal Injuries Compensation Fund is where she was referred. The Director tells me they will handle the collection calls. The fund paid one hospital bill and CICF can help schedule therapy, but cannot guarantee reimbursement nor future payments for counseling, which is what Kimberly wants from Fort Lee.
"I still haven't been able to go to therapy," she says. "I have it in black and white, them stating that they will pay the medical bills and the countless lawyers that I have talked to all state I do have a case... but none of them is willing to go up against Fort Lee."
If you know of any additional resources to help Kimberly, email: firstname.lastname@example.org or call: 804-230-2620 and let me know.
If you're a victim of a crime and need help, contact CICF at 1-800-552-4007 or email CICFMail@vwc.state.va.us.
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