Warning: this article touches on subject matter that some readers may find distressing
Daisy Coleman, one of the subjects of hard-hitting Netflix documentary Audrie & Daisy, has died aged 23.
Daisy alleged that she was raped at a party in 2012, when she was just 14 years old, but the claim led to Daisy receiving a huge amount of online abuse via social media.
Seventeen-year-old Matthew Barnett was accused of the crime and later charged with felony sexual assault, but the case was ultimately dropped.
Daisy and her family argued this was because of political connections that Barnett’s family had in the small town of Maryville, Missouri.
Netflix’s feature-length documentary examined her case and that of another teenage girl, Audrie Pott, who took her own life in September 2012.
Daisy’s death was also a suicide, according to her mother, Melinda Coleman, who first reported the new to US outlet TMZ.
She said: “She was my best friend and amazing daughter. I think she had to make it seem like I could live without her. I can’t. I wish I could have taken the pain from her!
“She never recovered from what those boys did to her and it’s just not fair. My baby girl is gone.”
Following her case, Daisy co-founded an organisation called SafeBAE, which aims to prevent sexual assault in middle schools and high schools, by educating students about consent and their rights.
SafeBAE released the following statement: “We are shattered and shocked by her passing from suicide. She had been in EMDR therapy for 2 years, working on her triggers and healing from the many traumas in her life.
“She had many coping demons and had been facing and overcoming them all, but as many of you know, healing is not a straight path or an easy one.
“She fought longer and harder than we will ever know. But we want to be mindful of all the young survivors who looked up to her. Please know that above ALL ELSE, she did this work for you.”
The full statement can be found on the organisation’s Twitter page.
As press are beginning to reach out, we wanted to release a statement so that we can all remember her for the legacy of her work: "Through our shock and sadness, we are releasing a statement about our loss of Daisy.
— SafeBAE (@safe_bae) August 5, 2020
You can reach the UK Samaritans Helpline on 116 123 or visit samaritans.org