A homeless woman who walked eight miles to a court house in Ohio to ensure her rapist was convicted and sentenced for his crime says she is overwhelmed by the amount of support she has received from strangers and members of her community.
The 47-year-old woman, who remains anonymous, was credited with putting her assailant, Paul E. Hubert, in prison after she made sure she showed up at court every day until he was sentenced to three years behind bars, we reported on Feb. 17. With the help of DNA testing, police were able to determine that Hubert raped the victim beneath a bridge on March 12, 2014.
Hubert pleaded guilty after realizing the woman showed up willing to testify against him. Since his conviction, The Columbus Dispatch reports several people from across the country have contacted them to find out how they can help the woman, who reportedly sleeps on the street, despite the freezing temperatures.
The woman says she is shocked to learn that anybody wants to give her assistance.
"Why would they want to help a homeless person?" she reportedly asked. "Why would people who have a job want to give their hard-earned money to help someone in my situation?"
The woman reportedly admitted she was an alcoholic and said she doesn't want to live in a homeless shelter. She says she is willing to accept help.
"I want to get off the streets," she said. "I'm tired of this. I'm tired of dumpster diving and wondering where I'm going to get my next meal from."
A detective reportedly took the woman to a McDonalds and bought her a meal while reading emails to her that were sent from people wishing to help. She reportedly began crying as he read them and said, "People do care."
Police say they took her to an emergency shelter for homeless people who are intoxicated, but that she checked out the following morning.