In an interview with Katie Couric on Tuesday, Jamie Carrillo said she hopes her story inspires other victims of sexual abuse to come forward — "that they realize that it's not too late."
In a YouTube video posted on Jan. 17, Carrillo called her former basketball coach, Andrea Cardosa, to confront her about abuse that Carrillo said lasted from age 12 to 20.
She told Cardosa, "You realize you brainwashed me and you manipulated me? And that what you did was wrong?"
"Yes," Cardosa responded. "And I regret it."
After the video was posted, police opened up an investigation into Cardosa, 40, who quickly resigned as assistant principal at California's Alhambra High School.
At the time, Carrillo 28, believed the statute of limitations had expired on her case. But on Feb. 3, Cardosa was arrested and charged with 16 counts of abuse. (The Associated Press reported that Cardosa confessed to abusing the teenage Carrillo.)
Carrillo said on Katie she hopes Cardosa stays in jail, describing the impact of her years of alleged abuse.
"Emotionally, with relationships, I have a difficult time," she said. "I have a family and everything. I love them to death, but there's certain things, like I don't trust people. My trust in everybody is just gone."
On her inspiration for posting the video:
My stepdaughter had just turned 11 years old, and that's around the time that I had started this thing with her. I kept thinking to myself, 'Well, is that ok? Was that relationship OK and would I be OK with my stepdaughter having that kind of relationship with somebody — a coach, a teacher?' And the answer was always no. It was always wrong every single time I thought about it.
On the nature of her relationship with Cardosa, which began in 8th grade with an "incident in the girl's locker room."
She would always threaten me with, you know, she was gonna embarrass me and tell everybody I was a lesbian and I wanted it. She also told me that she was going to kill herself if I ever tried to get away ...
She would rip the phone cords out of the wall and she'd take my cell phone and break it so that I couldn't call anyone. [Once] I tried to get in my car and leave, and she jumped on the hood of my car so that I couldn't go anywhere, and I thought I was gonna run her over.
On keeping the abuse secret from her family:
Everybody knew that I was spending a lot of time with [Cardosa], but she had everybody fooled.
[My mom] had a lot on her plate. She was taking care of five kids by herself, and that's a difficult thing to do on a minimum wage job. And she didn't have a lot of time to spend with me, and Cardosa took me under her wing — is what she was calling it. I guess she figured that I was with somebody that everybody trusted, and [Cardosa] was responsible, so she trusted her too.
Jessica Testa is a national reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in New York.
Contact Jessica Testa at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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