I think this is the third time I’ve sent in protests to the parole of Carl E. Chambers, who raped and sodomized me for roughly 6 hours on January 10, 1987. It was a lovely Saturday morning in Austin, TX that quickly grew to be a matter of survival, and the ultimate nightmare. I’ll get to what he did to me in a minute- both during the attack and the longterm effects. But first to Chamber’s character and history on parole. I’m writing because I’m not sure how long I’ll be able to keep it together during the phone interview. It might be a bit scattered.
Chamber’s first known (adult) conviction per the Parole Division Adjustment Statement I received, and how I understand it, was in Illinois in December 1976 (for forgery)… his 5 year probation was revoked due to a burglary charge. He got 1-3 years for that, but let out on parole. Then, he was convicted of kidnapping, and released on parole in 1985. He was then convicted of Aggravated Assault with a Deadly Weapon (I believe this was the screwdriver to the neck of a woman at a bus stop in Austin, TX), for which he got 3 years- but was paroled 8 months later, in 12/1986…. Thirty-nine days later, he lied to get me to pick up his infant nephew (a regular babysitting job) under the ruse of his brother-in-law being in an accident, and someone needed to watch the baby. I loved that little guy, so I immediately went. I was very naive, and knew nothing of his sociopathic or criminal history, other than his sister telling me that that last charge was a situation where he’d been in the wrong place at the wrong time (he probably lied to her as well- she was only 19 years old). I didn’t know what it all meant. His sister (the baby’s mom) told me he’d been a problem as a juvenile, and the ‘black sheep’ of the family… he’s never coexisted normally in society.
With the last parole violation (domestic violence), he pled no contest… he seems to be unable to function in a world he’s never really been a part of since December of 1976. At least 4 parole approvals, during which time he became exponentially more violent. He agreed to a 60 year sentence during a bizarre change of plea mid-trial during the trial for what he did to me. He AGREED to a 60 year sentence. I understand mandatory release, but why send this type of “human” back out into the public unless it’s absolutely required by law? His track record is that of progressive violence. He’s not safe in public. He also moved to an unknown location while on intensive monitoring in the past. As a sex offender, he was around his step grandsons (maybe he only has to avoid the demographic group he’s violated- just seemed weird) who were given scripted things to write for the last parole protest. His wife married him while in prison for what he did to me- she is not a safe or reliable resource for not helping him leave the area he is supposed to be in, if they are still married. Seriously- someone marrying a convicted rapist? He must have spun some tale for her…. her letter protesting his parole revocation screams of bad judgment and poor self esteem, if she thinks Chambers is suitable spouse material….
That Saturday morning in January 1987changed my life forever. Yes, it’s been 28 years since he spent six hours continuously beating, raping, and sodomizing me with his penis, his fists, and a wine cooler bottle that had ragged tin foil around the top. The force he used tore uterine ligaments. The pain was so intense that all I could do was hold on to the coffee table leg, and focus my attention to the pain in my hand, so I could keep from screaming during the assault on my internal organs. He told me he’d kill me if I made noise. I saw blood halfway between his wrists and elbows, on both of his arms, from “manipulating” my vaginal area.
About 11-12 weeks after the attack, I woke up with horrible abdominal cramping, and what I assume was a fetus dropped into the toilet. I’d been a nurse long enough to remember what the photos of the pre-born look like from my obstetrics class. I saw the side of the placenta that attached to my uterus- not the baby (who would have looked like a baby by that time). I was so relieved to not have to carry his spawn… and yet it was a baby, and the only one I’d ever carry…. I still have a lot of conflicting pain about that. How could I ever have made that child feel wanted, and even if I’d given it up for adoption,and he/she found me later, what kind of pain would that cause the child to know that he/she was the product of a violent rape by a career criminal , and essentially unwanted? I am not a fan of abortion- but I thought about it. In the end, God was merciful enough to end that pregnancy.
I’d always wanted a house full of kids, and a loving husband. It had been a dream for a long time. I was known as “the babysitter” during junior high and high school. I spent 11 years in the church nursery, for both Sunday services as well as the Wednesday dinner service. I wanted my own babies. I was a virgin when Chambers violated me, and nobody has touched me sexually since that day. Check that out…. I’m a 51 year old virgin, minus the rape. The thought of someone getting that close is repulsive to me. I have male friends and family that I see fairly rarely that I’m able to hug, and it’s OK,. but I never have been able to be intimate. That dream of a family and kids was over. I’ve missed a LOT of normal life events because of the rape. Sometimes I feel rather defective because of that.
As I get older, I realize how much I miss having a family of my own. I only have my dad (who is nearly 83 years old, so not sure if he’s going to be around for 20 more years, or ????), and a biological mom who is several thousand miles away. There are some assorted, beloved cousins in other states. When my dad is gone, I will be alone here, and can’t help but wonder what my life would be like had I not be so viciously attacked. There are very few friends nearby, and they all have lives. There is no other person who has really shared my life as long as my dad has (I was adopted at 10 days old). I’d always imagined a husband and four or five kids. But that dream died when the experience of being so violated changed my perspective and ability to trust. And being “handled” isn’t something I can deal with. Who would want to marry someone who freaks out at being touched in a normal type of relationship? I couldn’t tolerate any prolonged physical closeness, or the awareness of someone else in my home- like when I was sleeping at night.
My parents and coworkers had a lot to deal with after I was attacked. It never is just about the specific victim… the collateral damage goes on for several groups of people. My mom was hurt deeply (she died in 2003, or I’m sure she would have sent in a letter). My dad has read my police statement, per his request. NO dad should have to read those things about his only “child”. My coworkers had to deal with my inability to focus, and general “not me”. I was asked to leave that job 2 weeks before the trial.
I still have hypervigilence. I’m still untrusting of most people (never really know someone). I still have vivid memories that bring me to tears. I still remember the positions he put me in, all over the apartment, that cold winter morning. I remember being an object. Each time I send in parole protest letters, it starts it all over again, and yet I feel a responsibility to fight to keep him contained. If the person who was attacked before me had done that, I wouldn’t be writing this. My jaw is still ‘weak’ when I open and close my mouth (it literally cracks). I still feel the scar in my mouth where my teeth went through my lower lip when he slugged me in the jaw. I’m still triggered when I hear about something in the news, or even in a movie. My perspective about a lot of things is different now.
These are the ‘simple’ reasons I don’t want Chambers let out. Emotionally, it’s much more complicated. He will hurt someone else- it’s his pattern. I don’t wish him ill will… but I do feel a need to do what I can to protect others from him.
Thank you for your time.
The Survivor/VIctim of TDCJ# 00453210
His 60 year sentence is also a life altering sentence for me.