After Rape at 14 and Horrific Aftermath, Daisy Coleman Dead at 23

She took her own life
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 6, 2020 2:00 AM CDT
Updated Aug 6, 2020 6:56 AM CDT
Second Rape Survivor From Netflix Documentary Dies by Suicide
Daisy Coleman is seen in a still from the "Audrie and Daisy" trailer.   (Netflix)

Daisy Coleman, whose devastating rape in 2012 and the horror that ensued were explored in a 2016 Netflix documentary, is dead at age 23. Coleman, who was just 14 when she was raped by a popular boy she considered a friend at a party in Maryville, Missouri, was one of the two subjects of Audrie and Daisy. The other, Audrie Pott, committed suicide days after she was raped at age 15 in California in 2012. In the years after Coleman was raped, after she endured bullying, threats, harassment, and worse, she became a sexual assault victim advocate, the BBC reports. Charges against her alleged assailant were dropped, which her family claimed was because his family was politically connected. He ultimately pleaded guilty to child endangerment, claiming the sex was consensual. Coleman previously attempted suicide at age 16, Rolling Stone reports.

"She never recovered from what those boys did to her and it’s just not fair. My baby girl is gone," Coleman's mom, Melinda, posted on Facebook. "I wish I could have taken the pain from her!" Daisy Coleman's father died when the girl was 9; one of her brothers, Tristan, was killed in a car crash in 2018 at age 19. After the rape case ostracized the family, their home was burned down. Daisy, who died Saturday night, "had many coping demons and had been facing and overcoming them all, but as many of you know, healing is not a straight path or any easy one. She fought longer and harder than we will ever know," says a statement from SafeBae (Before Anyone Else), the nonprofit Coleman started. It adds that Coleman would want young sexual assault survivors "to know they are heard, they matter, they are loved, and there are places for them to get the help they need." (More Daisy Coleman stories.)

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