34-year-old Catherine St. Germain from Loveland, Colorado, was in the prime of her life. She had separated from her former husband, the father of her 15-year-old daughter, Alyssa, and was embarking on a new relationship with a man named Aaron Scott, whom she dearly loved.
She had known him for 20 years. He was a veteran of the U.S. Navy and a former police officer with three children of his own — a boy and two girls. He was affectionate, close to his family, intelligent, charming and a true romantic. It was like paradise on earth for Catherine, a kind of happiness unknown to her after so many years stuck in a loveless marriage.
They married on June 18, 2014, but instead of exchanging rings they decided to get a tattoo that would forever mark the bond that united them. They literally sealed their marriage with blood and ink because she was certain she had finally found her happily ever after …
Almost a year later, on April 23, 2015, Catherine received a call from the police. She was instructed not to talk to Aaron, and to head over to the police station as soon as possible. Catherine had no idea what was going on, but could sense it was something serious.
Upon arriving at the police station, Catherine’s world fell apart. Her daughter, Alyssa, was waiting there with the officers, who proceeded to tell her something she never imagined hearing: Aaron had sexually assaulted her daughter. Catherine felt her heart break when she heard that the man she loved and brought home had caused her child such harm.
Catherine barely had contact with him again. She kicked him out of the house and sued for justice. Aaron maintained his innocence and argued that Alyssa was lying. But the DNA test proved otherwise. Only when he was cornered by the evidence did he accept a plea bargain. The conviction Aaron received outraged many and for this reason Catherine decided to make a video that has been viewed over 60 million times.
The video consists of Catherine telling her story using small signs with information and pictures of Aaron and herself when they were together. The images and words are quite strong, and reveal how terribly difficult it has been to deal with this whole situation, especially for her daughter. Aaron was sentenced on January 20, 2016, to 90 days in prison and eight years of sex offender probation.
For Catherine and everyone around her, the news came as a shock. How could this criminal be released after such a short period of time? In addition, she learned that the mother of Aaron’s children had not been notified of the conviction. The terror grew inside her: just how many abusers are roaming the streets without anyone knowing? How many single mothers out there are letting predators enter their houses who are just waiting for the right moment to jump on their children?
Catherine’s message is strong and clear: First and foremost, always believe your children. They are the victims and the most vulnerable of all. They are blood of our blood and they deserve our trust. She also reminds all single mothers to check records of abusers who have been released. Her unfortunate experience shows that checking and verifying records is a must, no matter who the person is, even if you have known them for 20 years. Her own words sum it up «Monsters look and act normal. They are VERY good at hiding who they REALLY ARE. They are the people we trust with our kids EVERY DAY «.
If you want to see the video that went viral, you can find it here:
Many of you know what Hell the last year has been for my family. I ask that you share this short video. I believe we must not remain silent, and instead shine a light in this dark subject.
Posted by Catherine St. Germain on Freitag, 8. April 2016