Domestic abuse victim-turned-congressional-candidate talks candidly about challenges women have talking to police

Ohio Democratic congressional candidate Janet Garrett, who was a victim of sexual assault, spoke candidly during an interview with Hill.TV's "Rising" about the challenges victims face in reporting cases to authorities. 

"I haven't really talked about this experience in my campaign because I felt that it wasn't a part of my political agenda, but you know, seeing all of the women who are in abusive relationships, and are finally starting to be listened to, I thought that it was time for me to come forward, and say what happened to me, and say to women 'there is life after abuse. Your life can completely change,' " Garrett told Hill.TV's Krystal Ball and Buck Sexton.

"I'm running for Congress now. I never dreamed that this would happen, and I'm running because I'm one of hundreds of women across the nation who are standing up against the government right now," Garrett said.

Garrett was in an abusive marriage and ended up calling the police after being abused by her husband one Christmas. 

She said the police said they felt bad for putting her husband in jail over the holidays, so they sent him to a nearby hotel before he returned to her home a week later. 

"I insisted that he move out at that time, and he was in the house for two very tense weeks until he found a place to live," Garrett said. 

The question of assault victims coming forward has gained national attention this month after two women came forward to accuse Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh of sexual assault. 

Christine Blasey Ford accused Kavanaugh of holding her down and groping her over her clothes during a high school party in 1982, and Deborah Ramirez claimed he exposed himself without her consent during a gathering at Yale University a few years later. 

Kavanaugh has fiercely denied the allegations, saying he is the victim of smears and "character assassination," and that he has never assaulted anyone.

— Julia Manchester