I had given evidence in court before during a previous life as a nurse. It was not a pleasant experience.
I had an ISVA ( independent sexual violence advocate) but they didn’t have enough staff to accompany me to court. They organised for me to visit my local courts because I was mostly concerned about how the screens worked.. I didn’t want him to see me or for me to see him
The witness service both at my local court and the one in London were very helpful and supportive.. both them and the police were very vigilant that we didn’t see anyone connected with the trial
It takes over your life, you have no guarantee that things will go to schedule ,I arrived Monday lunchtime but didn’t give evidence till Wednesday afternoon. My family were with me so we tried to kill time by going sight seeing.
Wednesday lunchtime arrived, we sat in a tiny room with a police officer waiting to give evidence. I sat numbly whilst everyone else discussed rubbish
The court room seemed miles away and we had to get there without bumping into anyone connected with the trial. The court room was emptied and screens put up. I was asked lots of questions, the defence trying everything to trip me up, was I sure? Has I remembered wrong? No! I was certain ..I remembered what the police officer has said ‘ they can’t trip you up if you’re telling the truth’
When it was over I ran from court but had to wait around again because my mother was giving evidence after me.
I don’t remember the journey home, I think I was in shock but I had done it! After all this time I had talked about what he did to me. I still had to wait a couple of weeks for the verdict but I was sure we would win, he’d be found guilty..I mean there we’re 5 of us mostly unconnected giving similar stories..how could they not find him guilty?