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Sasha was classmates with Eddie’s daughter, so she would often see him at the apartment and in the local grocery store.

 

“It was innocent at first. I thought he was cute,” Sasha recalled. “I could tell he was really flirtatious with me. But it was not much more than that until we met again when I was 15.”

 

Sasha was a runaway when they reconnected, and she eventually moved in with Eddie. It was a “normal” arrangement at first. Sasha would cook, clean, and look after Eddie’s kids from time to time.

 

However, one night at a party filled with alcohol and drugs things took a turn. “He approached me and told me he wanted me to have sex with this guy for money,’” Sasha said. “I kept saying no, I didn’t want to do it. He kept telling me, ‘If you love me, you’ll do this.’” Finally, after constant pressure, Sasha agreed.

 

What she thought would be a one-time thing became an everyday routine. Night after night and bar after bar, Sasha would go out with Eddie while he advertised her to potential “suitors.”

 

She was held against her will, beaten and made to feel like she had no other option at the time, all by the man she thought she loved. Sasha tried to endure. “Being able to live with myself and get up every day and just keep lying there helpless was unbearable,” Sasha said.

 

Help eventually came for Sasha when law enforcement received a tip about Eddie’s crimes and moved in and arrested Eddie. After Sasha testified against him, Eddie pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 12 years in prison.

 

Sasha’s focus now is on moving forward. “I want to take on journalism, go to college and study political science and pre-law,” she said.

“I JUST WANT TO LIVE A NORMAL LIFE, ACCEPT MY PAST AND NOT RUN FROM IT.”

Story sourced from the Department of Homeland Security. All pictures shown are for representation purposes only and are commercially available portraits. We have taken great care to change names and identifying details for Survivor’s confidentiality and protection