A Colorado woman featured in a Netflix documentary about sexual assault was reportedly the target of harassment and stalking before she committed suicide earlier this week, People magazine reports.
Friends of Daisy Coleman say they believe the stalker’s actions were the primary reason she took her own life.
“Every media [outlet] is blaming her suicide on her rape, and ignoring that she was going through so much before her suicide, and not putting any blame on this man for harassing her,” one friend told People. “She would rather kill herself than let this man kill her.”
A second friend told the magazine that Coleman was afraid the man might harm her or take her life before she died.
The 2016 Netflix documentary “Audrie & Daisy” featured Coleman and a friend who alleged they were sexually assaulted and then harassed in their small Missouri town.
In January 2012, Coleman, then 14, and a 13-year-old friend had snuck out of the house and encountered a group of boys.
Coleman reportedly told police she was provided with a clear liquid and then was raped by one boy while another recorded the assault on a phone. She was then left on a porch in freezing temperatures until being found several hours later.
The phone video was later deleted, according to the magazine.
Authorities charged one of the boys, 17-year-old Matthew Barnett, with misdemeanor child endangerment because he left Coleman outside in freezing temperatures. No charges were brought in connection to the alleged sexual assault.
After speaking out about the alleged attack, Coleman was bullied and “slut shamed,” People reports, prompting her to move from Missouri to Colorado.
Coleman had been open about her mental health struggles since the encounter and had repeatedly attempted suicide, according to People.
However, things began to turn around after the documentary was released and Coleman became an advocate for sexual assault victims.
But by December 2019, private social media posts reviewed by People indicate that a man was stalking and harassing her, and that she had reported the behavior to police.
The day she died, Coleman tweeted that she was afraid to exit her home and that she was not sleeping or eating properly out of concern from the alleged harassment.
Coleman alleged in a separate Facebook post that the stalker showed up at her home without invitation and forcefully pounded on her door.
The man also reportedly created new phone numbers to contact her and had even posted her phone number online allegedly offering sex acts in exchange for money.
Police in Lakewood, Colorado, declined to comment on whether Coleman had previously contacted them about the stalker because of an ongoing investigation, according to the report.
However, the police department’s public information officer, John Romero, told People that Coleman appears to have died as a result of a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
[Featured image: Daisy Coleman/Instagram]