Lewis spent two years in juvenile detention. Then she was “offered” five years of probation in a facility AND a $150,000 bill to pay her rapist’s family restitution.
Lewis is a part of a much bigger problem. 40% of sex trafficking victims in the U.S. are Black. In places like LA County, that number rises to 92%. 59% of youth arrested for "juvenile prostitution" are also Black.
But things started looking up when Lewis’ former teacher started a GoFundMe.
Contributors raised over $550,000, paying off her restitution and making sure she has college money. Lewis hopes to advocate for survivors like her in the future.
"My spirit has been burned, but still glows through the flames," she said in court. "Hear me roar, see me glow, and watch me grow."
Lewis’ case shows how the criminal legal system is designed to punish survivors of sexual violence, not protect them or end sex trafficking. But it also shows the power of community - when we can come together on each other's behalf, we have power in numbers - no one ever has to be alone!