The teenage girl who says she was raped by a Maryville High School football player then left passed out on her porch in freezing weather has written a first-person account of her ordeal for an online woman's magazine in which she claims the incident sent her into a spiral of depression that resulted in two failed suicide attempts.
Daisy Coleman, who was 14 when she says 17-year-old Matthew Barnett plied her with alcohol and had sex with her while she was incapacitated, told her story in a first-person article posted Friday on xojane.com.
In the article, she wrote about how she and a 13-year-old friend were picked up at her house on Jan. 8, 2012, by Barnett, who she says sexually assaulted her in his basement after she drank a clear liquid.
"Then it was like I fell into a dark abyss," she wrote. "No light anywhere. Just dark, dense silence — and cold. That's all I could ever remember from that night."
Mandy Stadtmiller, deputy editor for the website, said she asked Coleman, now 16, to provide the first-person account after reading about her story.
"I thought the article was heartbreaking and very powerful in its innocence, and in its shattered innocence," Stadtmiller said.
The case has generated new attention and an outpouring of responses on social media following a Kansas City Star investigation describing how Nodaway County prosecutor Robert Rice dismissed felony charges against Barnett and classmate Jordan Zech, who had been accused of sexually assaulting Coleman and videotaping the act.
Following the arrest of Zech and Barnett last year, crime lab technicians in Kansas City were reportedly unable to recover the video after it was erased from a cell phone's memory chip.
The Colemans also spoke out earlier this summer to Kansas City radio station KCUR.
Last week Rice announced he was asking Missouri's Fourth Judicial Circuit Court to appoint a special prosecutor to examine the evidence and decide whether new charges are warranted.
Melinda Coleman didn't immediately respond to requests by the Associated Press Friday seeking comment about her daughter's online remarks.
In the xojane.com article, Daisy Coleman said the reason she chose to talk publicly is because she refuses "to be a victim of cruelty any longer."
"I not only survived, I didn't give up. I've been told that a special prosecutor is going to reopen the case now. This is a victory, not just for me, but for every girl," she wrote.
In other developments, Melinda Coleman last week released excerpts of a recording she claims to have made secretly during a May 2012 meeting with Rice.
Posted in transcript form on the Kansas City Star's website, the recording indicates that Melinda Coleman told Rice, "We were always willing to testify" and appears to contradict Rice's explanation that the felony charges were dropped due to the Coleman's refusal to cooperate.
Page 2 of 2 - Rice has been adamant that sealed transcripts from a deposition involving the Colemans will vindicate his decision.
He told the Daily Forum on Friday that he seriously considered releasing the documents to the media but was warned by the Missouri Association of Prosecuting Attorneys that doing so could result in criminal charges and possible revocation of his license to practice law.