Produced by Peter Shaw
[This story first aired on Jan. 23, 2016. It was updated on May 13, 2017]
The inspiring story of one woman’s will to live through a brutal attack, how that night changed her life forever, and the investigation and changing technology that would help police track down her attackers 18 years later.
“Victoria” | Survivor: My story is evil. …Sort of, getting a taste of hell. …But it’s a story that needs to be told. …My name is Victoria. But it’s not my real name. …I’m gonna take to you a really dark place.
HUNTINGTON BEACH, CALIF. | DEC. 23, 1990
I was 19 years old … I was an absolute rocker – chick. …That night … I was with … a few friends. …We were gearing up to go out and look at Christmas lights. …As I was going home that evening … I know it was just after midnight … I was pulling into my complex, I noticed … my gate was wide open. …It was extremely dark in the parking lot. And … the lights in — over — my car port were glitching.
I thought I had heard the sound of possibly somebody coming through the gate. … It was that “dah-duh, dah-duh” sound of tires going over, like, a rail. …Just the sound. …I had taken my dog and stuck her inside my jacket and then folded her up … real tight ’cause it was very cold outside. …And as I got out I just had the weirdest feeling that I was being watched.
[Sigh] and as I got up to the sidewalk … I saw a shadow go in front of a light. …And as I did that — a guy just came up and fastly approached me. …And he kept saying, “Excuse me, excuse me, I’m lost. Can you help me find where the beach is?” … [sigh] and then … a second person comes up. …He had a cigarette in his hand … and I see this in slow motion in my head–I see him flicking…