- 2015 Federal Election
You have ruined my life: Pitt rave girl
The young woman at the centre of allegations stemming from a summer rave in Pitt Meadows shared her story for the first time Wednesday to packed courtroom, recounting a night she claims she barely remembers.
Choking back tears during a sentencing hearing in Port Coquitlam Provincial Court, the girl told Dennis John Allen Warrington he had ruined her life.
"Dennis can tell this courtroom, your family and your lawyer 100 times that you are sorry for what you did and you can apologize to me but I don't believe you are sorry for one second," said the girl, in a voice flush with rage.
"You are not sorry for what you did. You are just sorry you got caught."
Originally charged with more serious offence of possessing and distributing child pornography, Warrington pleaded guilty in December to a lesser count of distributing obscene material for posting three photographs of the girl on Facebook.
The photographs were graphic, close-ups of a couple having sex - the faces of the girl and boy obscured.
The Sept. 10, 2010 party held at a farm on Harris Road, dubbed Another Night in Bangkok, drew hundreds of teens and young adults.
Sixteen at the time, the young woman went to the rave with a group of friends.
"Just like everyone else at the party, we did bring alcohol," she said, but noted she didn't plan on getting very drunk that night because she wanted to "stay responsible" for her friends.
The teens even picked a spot outside the barn where they would meet should anyone get lost in the crowd.
"I was having the time of my life, hanging out with my friends, dancing, singing and laughing," she told the court.
She was offered Ecstasy but turned the offer down because "drugs were never her thing."
For some reason however the teen accepted a drink from a stranger - a decision she continues to regret to this day.
Her memory fades within minutes of downing the drink.
She told the court she has no recollection of meeting Colton McMorris, the 18-year-old who had sex with her that night and was eventually charged with rape.
Charges against him were stayed a year ago because there was not enough evidence for a conviction. McMorris still maintains the sex was consensual.
"The next few things that I can remember are the fuzziest weirdest memories I've ever had," said the girl.
"They are not even solid memories. They are fragments."
She remembers a light in her face, most likely a memory of a torch that was used to illuminate the couple while they had sex in a field near the barn and a crowd of more than a dozen people watched them, some snapping pictures.
She did not remember leaving the rave with McMorris or going to McDonald's with him and her friends.
She did not remember getting into a taxi but has a vague recollection of being in a moving car with a bunch of people.
The girl woke up the next day in a friend's house, dishevelled and groggy.
"I have never felt so weird after waking up after a night of partying," she told the court.
"I felt awful."
When she checked her Facebook page, she was already being inundated with messages, asking if she was "that" girl at the party.
Her friends soon confirmed that there were photographs of her having sex being shared on Facebook and via text messages.
"My heart sank and I knew it must be me. With all the messages I'd been getting and the condition of my body, I put two and two together."
When she got home, she spent the day crying while scanning Facebook with its vicious, nasty comments.
She told the court her friends tried, with little success, to get Warrington and the teen who took the photos to take them down.
The next day, a very close friend of the girl forced her to go to hospital where she was examined by a sexual assault nurse.
That night, she mustered the courage to tell her mother what little she remembered of the night.
Her parents urged her to call police but she refused.
The next day however police were at her house because an anonymous person had complained about the pornographic images on Facebook.
The girl blamed Warrington for allowing those photographs to go viral.
"What happened that night should have stayed between the people involved and dealt with privately," she said.
"But because you made the decision to make these photos public, everyone from one end of town to the other has seen these disgusting and disconcerting pictures of the incident. That should never have happened."
RCMP held a press conference a week after the rave where they begged people to stop sharing the photographs and threatened to charge those who did with distributing child pornography.
The abuse and torment however has yet to abate on social media.
The court heard that although Warrington had spoken with police, a month after the rave, he posted a rap song on his Facebook page that mimicked the Eminem song Lose Yourself.
On Twitter and Facebook, his friends continue to name and threaten the girl, whose identity is protected by a publication ban.
"Honestly, it's like being tortured on a daily basis and I wouldn't wish that on my worst enemy," the girl said.
"People say that it will get better and that the pain will go away but it's been two years and it still kills me."
The bullying that followed caused the girl to drop out of high school. To this day, she suffers from panic attacks and anxiety. She even turned to drugs and thought about killing herself.
"The word rage isn't even strong enough for my feelings towards you," the girl told Warrington.
"Your actions were immoral, immature and just plain right stupid."
The girl's mother and father also read their victim impact statements, with both describing how
devastating the events have been for their family.
"My family name has been attacked, slander and used for the enjoyment and entertainment of sick individuals who continue to attack my daughter," said the father.
"As a father, I am meant to protect my family. Clearly I feel helpless in carrying this out."
The girl's mother told her court a friend of Warrington had wished he could kill her daughter with his bare hands on Twitter. She noted her daughter's name is all over the Internet and will surface in connection with the rave every time it's Googled.
"I thank God everyday that my daughter has the strength to endure all the bullying she's been subject to because of Dennis Warrington's nonchalant, malicious actions," said the mother.
"If this had happened to your sister or mother, would you have posted those pictures? The Internet is a lawless society and people think they can do what they want."
The mother hoped that people will now think twice about posting on things that hurt others on the Internet.
"Dennis Warrington has to be held accountable for this, an example has to be made so that others will not do the same and destroy more lives," she added.
Crown prosecutor Wendy van Tongeren Harvey is seeking a suspended sentence for Warrington and a 12-month probation period with strict conditions that include abstaining from alcohol and drugs as well as 120 hours of community service.
Crown stressed that the photos he shared are still classified as child pornography under the law.
Van Tongeren Harvey told the judge although Warrington claims he was "told" to share the photos by friends, his motive for posting them was "narcissistic."
"He was seeking to entertain himself and his friends at the expense of others," said van Tongeren Harvey, adding that Crown was being lenient in its request for a suspended sentence.
Warrington's lawyer Marvin Stern is seeking a conditional discharge for his client.
A conditional discharge would mean Warrington won't have a criminal record.
Warrington, 21, apologized in court for his actions and acknowledged what he did was "thoughtless and supremely immature".
"To think that just the thoughtless push of a button could change so many outcomes is hard to believe and yet so easily overlooked until the consequences surface," he said.
"It was all too easy to upload and share something that wasn't mine to share.
Just a few clicks and it changed your life and how the world viewed the person you are."
But Warrington did not grasp the gravity of his actions months after the rave. He breached his bail conditions twice by drinking.
During the second breach, he fought with police and refused a breathalyzer.
That breach resulted in the young man spending three days inside the North Fraser Pre-trial Centre, with seasoned criminals who thought he was a sex offender.
He was threatened and a tray of food was thrown at him.
Extremely frightening, his experience in prison was the impetus for changing his behaviour.
For the past year, Warrington has complied with bail conditions and matured.
"I hope I can convey how truly sorry I am," Warrington told the court.
"All I can do is try to change who I am because of it, to change how I approach any situation with thought and justification so I can avoid making mistakes that might cause anyone pain in the future. I hope that one day you are able to forgive my actions..."
After Warrington apologized, the girl texted Crown saying she appreciated it.
Judge Shehni Dossa will sentence Warrington on March 4.