LA GRANDE:  Victim of restroom peeping tom speaks out

LA GRANDE: Victim of restroom peeping tom speaks out

Jared Hansen of La Grande, the man who was arrested in February for shooting videos of females in the restrooms at the Pilot Travel Center in Stanfield appeared in a Umatilla County Courtroom this week.  Presiding judge was Judge Christopher Brauer’s.  According to Umatilla County Chief Deputy District Attorney Jaclyn Jenkins, Hansen plead guilty to two counts of Invasion of Privacy in the First Degree with two different victims.  He received a five-year probationary sentence in one case.  In the other one, he also received a 5-year probation sentence, with a 14 months prison possible if he violates his probation.

One of the victims of Hansen chose to give a statement to both the presiding judge as well as Elkhorn Media Group staff.  That statement, in its entirety (excluding the victim’s name), can be found below.

“My name is XXXX, and I live in Washington.  I am 14 years  old, and the youngest  of  six siblings. I have four brothers, and a sister. All of my siblings live in different parts of Eastern Oregon,  so we are always driving to visit them. I have always  loved our road trips, usually  it’s just  my mom  and I and we listen to music, stop for coffee and talk about everything that is going on in life. My mom is one of  my closest friends, which is something that I have always been proud of. My friends have even told me that  they wish they could be as open with their moms, as I am with mine. The last trip we took was special because it was my brother, stepdad and my  dog that  all  went  with  us.  After  dropping off  my  brother and heading home, we stopped at our normal stops for bathroom breaks and snacks. We went into the store, and my Mom was so happy because one of her favorite old songs was playing inside the store.

We walked into the bathroom together, and one of the middle stalls was taken. I went into the one next to it and my mom went in the one on the other side of me. After I was done using the toilet, I turned around and saw the  top  half of a phone pointing up at me from the bottom of the stall that the stall  was occupied when we went in. My first thought was of what I should do, who was in that stall and  what their reaction would be to my reaction. Did this person have a gun, would they shoot and kill me and my mom? I decided to quietly shove the phone away. I could see the top half of the screen on the phone and the time that had lapsed on the recording before I pushed it back under. I got out of the stall as quickly as I could and acted as normal as I could while I waited for my mom by the sink. My hope was that if I pretended to act normal, they wouldn’t come out of the stall. I washed my hands, and my mom came out of her stall. As soon as she saw me she knew something was wrong. I had started shaking really bad. I told her that the person in that stall, and pointed to it, had recorded me. I have never seen my mom so upset. She had started yelling at the person in the stall. Mom pushed me out of the bathroom and told me to go get my stepdad. I was so scared, and it was so loud in the store.

Through the noise I heard my mom scream that it was a man in the women’s bathroom. I had made it to the middle of the snack isle when I heard her, and I just dropped. A lady who worked at the store picked me up off the floor and just hugged me and asked what happened and I just cried. I had never had so many emotions run through me at once, I felt violated, and scared. I couldn’t get the words to come out to tell the woman what had happened, I was so shaken up from everything running through my head. Afterthe cops got there, I couldn’t find the words to say much to them either. I was sitting there and everything that had happened kept repeating in my head and I couldn’t make it stop. Later when we were allowed to go, I felt like I walked out of that place a different person. Over the past few months, I haven’t been able to feel like myself. It has been very hard for me to get through a day without thinking about what happened. Something was taken from me that day, the feeling of safety and feeling confident in myself. Everywhere I go I am worried that this could happen again. I am scared that I won’t ever be myself again. This situation has made me painfully aware of my surroundings and scared that this, and situations like it, are happening to other people and other girls my age. This situation has made me want to help others that have gone through similar situations. Now I know the strength that it takes to  get through something like this. I haven’t felt like I had the strength until I  found Biker’s Against Child Abuse. Finding them and being able to turn to them for strength has helped me feel like I can get through this. I am glad that I was able to stop this man from hurting other innocent women and girls that day and hope that we can stop this from ever happening again.”

 

Also noting that she advised everyone to “be careful and watch out for your surroundings cuz you never know if there are people around you like this.  They might seem normal, but they are probably everywhere, you just gotta keep a lookout.”