‘They say you got to leave but it’s never that easy’ – woman claims stalked by ex-boyfriend
Almost a year after walking away from an abusive relationship, months after securing a restraining order and in the midst of ongoing police investigations and court hearings, Tiffeney Ageda says the continued harassment from her now ex-boyfriend is incessant.
The frustrated 28-year-old hosted a zoom conference on Thursday with other concerned women, one of whom claimed she too was abused and stalked by the same young man. The News Room was invited to join the Zoom conference after reaching out to Ageda.
Ageda says she feels boxed into a corner and believes the legal system and wider government protection services have so far failed her. But she thinks there is still time to properly address the issue and send a message to all other abusers and women, who may currently be in abusive relationships, looking for a way out.
A disappointed Ageda is daunted that enough is not being done to protect her, and by extension, all other women in similar situations in Guyana.
“The same people who talk about abusive relationships are quiet now. People talk but they don’t walk the talk, it’s all for show. They say things like ‘you got to leave’, but it is never that easy. I am sure millions of women can tell you that,” she said.
Ageda, who is currently before the court with her ex-boyfriend for breach of the restraining order, which was granted to both parties, believes her biggest mistake was meeting him after the order was granted and agreeing to drop charges they were both defending in court at the time.
But even with this small regret, Ageda said if the support to ward off her abuser was more forthcoming, she could have avoided appealing to the conscience of her powerlifting ex.
“When someone dies, everyone comes out… people are offering support and I admire that, but it is not just that, people need to walk the walk and not just talk the talk,” she added.
Ageda said representatives from the Ministry of Human Services and Social Security have reached out to her, offering counselling which she is inclined to accept.
In addition, they have provided a recommendation to her legal team.
“I would want them to know that they need to do more for women in these situations, they need a (special) investigation unit for women. This is no longer about myself. So I need them to pay attention to this story because a lot of people are looking for the outcome.”
She recalled that in August last year, her boyfriend became abusive and hit her in the face resulting in lacerations to her lips.
Ageda said he took her to the hospital and instructed her to lie to the doctor about her injuries, but she nonetheless, confided in the doctor.
She would subsequently make a report, forcing her boyfriend to evade the police for days, before turning up at the police station with his lawyer to make a report against her.
They were both charged and released on bail and even appeared in court, but since then, he has been stalking her at her job and her home, forcing her to flee the country.
Phone calls to herself and other family members have also been a constant feature in her ex-boyfriend’s alleged pestering.
Ageda claims that although some of his advances were captured on CCTV and others were recorded and handed over to the police, her matter continues to be treated callously.
She would later drop the charges against her ex-boyfriend after weeks of hearings and it was put off for several months because the Magistrate was reportedly pregnant.
“I got frustrated by the system and we both decided to drop the charges… my mistake was doing that because then he started to pursue me relentlessly. I tried to move on and he didn’t like the idea of me trying to move on,” she explained.
The woman, who recently took to her Facebook page to publicise the matter, says her family members have also become the subject of her ex’s aggravation, which she believes is responsible for persons smashing the windows on her vehicle and another vehicle belonging to her brother.
“I have to be looking over my shoulder constantly. I am fearful for my life and now I fear for my family.”
Ageda will appear in court virtually on June 21, 2021, to answer charges relating to breach of the restraining order even as her ex-boyfriend has sought to counter her accusation by claiming that she is the aggressor.
“The police need to do their work and investigate… I don’t want to become another statistic.”