It is a well known fact that women do not get equal pay for equal work. It’s nothing new. However, it goes well beyond this in Florida and probably other states as well. Women do not get a fair shake in our court systems, especially if it involves a man. The man usually wins out over the woman.
Recently, my female room mate was attacked by our live-in landlord, Curtis (not his real name). They had been having a sexual relationship. This relationship was started by Curtis. He has shown himself to be a sex addict. He took advantage of Ann, (not her real name) once he learned that she was suffering from depression from the recent death of her sister, which was hot on the heels of her mother’s death. Ann took on the financial responsibility of funeral expenses and found herself in the position of having to rent a room until she could secure a better job and get out of her financial debt.
Curtis started his sexual harassment from the start once he realized she was an easy target. At first it was minor flirtations and then progressed to outright sexual demands. (ex. Sending pictures of his penis to Ann on his cell phone.)
Ann, feeling lost and alone, mistook his attentions for love and allowed herself to be dragged into his trap. Before long she had moved into his room and had become his sex slave. Curtis would call her at work and demand she come home because he “needed her.” In the course of seven months Ann went through six jobs. Curtis was blaming me, saying I was calling up her boss, and getting her fired. I was being threatened by court action, yet I had no idea what was going on.
In fact, she was never fired at all but forced to quit because of Curtis’s demands and constant phone calls to her at work. She was not emotionally strong enough to fight him. This was his way of controlling her. He'd begun to separate her from her family and friends, driving a wedge between her and me, a tactic familiar to many women in abusive relationships.
Curtis also showed himself to be a liar, as well as an invasive thief, going into our rooms while we were gone to steal whatever caught his eye. He let Ann take the blame, another way to keep her alienated from the rest of the renters.
From the beginning, Curtis proclaimed himself a non-drinker, one of his biggest lies. Within the first month of moving in, Curtis came home in a drunken stupor. I awoke to find he’d opened my door and was standing there stark naked. Fortunately for me, he was too drunk to do anything and ended up passing out on the living room floor. Over the course of the following months his drinking increased. However, it wasn’t limited to just alcohol. He was also doing drugs, one of the many kinds that come in powdered form.
During the last such episode, Ann decided she’d had enough of his crap. She told him she was leaving. That’s when the feces hit the fan.
Curtis trapped Ann in their bedroom by removing the doorknob. I was awakened by her cries for help and went to investigate. Our male room mate had left the house not wanting to get involved. Typical!
I could hear Curtis threatening Ann and her crying, “You hit me! You hit me!” He laughed and demanded she show him the mark, to prove he’d hit her. Ann was 3 months pregnant at the time. I was able to get the door opened and Ann flew out with Curtis hot behind her. My aid to her caused me to become the enemy and Curtis threatened me with death by foot long screw driver.
This entire conversation was heard by the 911 operator and recorded, and soon we had 5 cop cars out front. Ann and I had left the house and were soon locked out by Curtis who was on a rampage. The cops asked us to write a report on what had happened. We were told to stand beneath a faulty street lamp and try to write this report in total darkness. Not one of the 6 cops would give us his flashlight to aid us. They were having too much fun trying to get Curtis to open the door. After about 30 minutes they gained access to the house and had to restrain Curtis with shackles and handcuffs.
He cried like a child in the back of the cruiser asking the cops to tell him what he’d done wrong. This after attacking one of the cops inside the house, something he was never charged with. Nor was he charged with attacking a disabled senior woman, me, or holding someone a prisoner against their will. In fact, once he was taken in front of the judge the case was dismissed for lack of evidence. My report was never admitted as evidence, nor the 911 call. Ann’s ‘No Contact’ order was now null and void. He could come to the house now as soon as he made bail on the remaining charge of DUI…a mere $200. In fact, the court reduced (removed) his bail on all the charges except that one.
When she read the letter from the court she put her face in her hands and cried. I was too shocked to cry. If it wasn’t for the DUI he still had to face, he’d already have been here. This was Curtis’s 4th DUI, all the others he’d managed to get out of due to the ineffective prosecuting attorney. His 3rd DUI had resulted in 3 people going to the hospital…and he got off scot free. Hey! Have you heard the one about the lawyer that got into heaven? No? That’s because there’s never been any.
This shows that the court system does not care about the victims if they are women. The cops were either negligent in handling the reports we had written or they deliberately lost one…mine. Did they feel sorrow for the poor man who had mistakenly gotten drunk and did drugs…(“You can’t prove that!”) Curtis was never given a drug or alcohol test. He consistently refused to take one. This is how he has managed to get off each charge.
Meanwhile, Ann and I learned that Curtis was not paying any of the bills with the rent he was getting from us…Yes; even Ann had to pay rent. The bills were three months over due and ready to be shut off. His three bank accounts were over drawn. His mortgage was nearing foreclosure. If it hadn’t been for Ann calling the bank and getting them to extend it, his house would already be in the foreclosure process.
What was he doing with all the money he was collecting from three renters? A person can’t drink up all that money, but drugs would sure put a dent in a total of $1,360 per month. Curtis had already lost his license so his truck driving job was lost. He slept away the days till way past noon, never even looking for a job. Taking the bus was not an option for him, being beneath him.