While working at the Shaw Group in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, I was sexually assaulted by four male co-workers who perceived that I was gay. But the District Attorney's office has refused to take the case. I believe this is because they don’t take male-on-male sexual assault seriously. Now, I’m calling for a state and federal investigation to hold my abusers accountable and prevent this from happening to anyone else.
The abuse started almost immediately at Shaw Group. They started bullying me by calling me names like “Skittles” and “sweet cheeks” and poured water down my pants. But things escalated to physical abuse on multiple occasions. At one point, they tied me up with electrical tape and another time they sodomized me with a ballpoint pen.
Working at Shaw was a great opportunity for me. I’m an orphan and I work hard to provide a better life for me and my younger brothers. I don’t have many options for work, so I put up with the abuse from my co-workers. I never thought getting this job that I would have to endure this.
When I finally had enough of the abuse, I went to the police. The four men were charged, but the District Attorney refused to take the case because I was unable to appear before a Grand Jury in August. I was only given two days notice before the hearing and my request for a delay so I could speak with a rape therapist before having to speak publicly about what happened to me was denied.
I’m calling on my Attorney General in Louisiana, Buddy Caldwell, and Thomas E. Perez, Assistant Attorney General for DOJ Civil Rights Division, to investigate the case. I know they’ll find the truth.
Talking about what happened to me isn’t easy. But I know that somewhere, someone else is going through the same thing.
I’m concerned that the District Attorney's office in Livingston Parish has refused to take on the case because they do not view male-on-male sexual assaults seriously. Regardless of Mr Sawyer's sexual orientation or the gender of his attackers, this is a serious crime. Furthermore, sexual harassment has occurred at the Shaw Group before.
The assault Mr. Sawyer says he experienced while an employee at the Shaw Group is incredibly serious. Not launching a thorough investigation would be unjust.
Please investigate these allegations not only for Mr. Sawyer, but to help prevent similar events from taking place again.
Thank you for your time.