“I hated his actions, but I could not hate the person.”
Shannon Moroney (Canada)
Jason Staples and Shannon Moroney married in October 2005 having been in a loving and committed relationship for three years. One month later, Jason attacked and brutally violated two female strangers at his workplace and hours later brought them to his and Shannon’s house. On arrest, he confessed that he had also committed acts of voyeurism on Shannon by videotaping her in the bathroom. Following a 2 ½ year court process, he was made a Dangerous Offender and sentenced to an indeterminate period of incarceration (Canada’s highest sentence). As part of her healing journey, Shannon now shares her experience through public speaking, writing, artwork, working for justice. She currently teaches high school and volunteers with Peacebuilders International in Toronto. Jason, within prison, has engaged himself in writing and art as well as participating in the jail’s restorative justice committee. Though they are no longer married, Jason and Shannon share a friendship that could possibility be forged by forgiveness.
“On the morning of our one-month wedding anniversary, I woke up in a Toronto hotel room where I was attending a conference for work. I lay in bed for a few minutes with my hands on my stomach, believing that I might be pregnant and hoping with all my heart that I was right. Jason and I wanted to have a family as soon as possible, and we had planned to take a test when I got home later that day.” Said Shannon.
“An hour later, those dreams were shattered. A police officer came to the door of my hotel room and told me Jason had been arrested the night before, charged with several crimes including sexual assault, aggravated sexual assault, assault with a weapon, choking, threatening death, and kidnapping. I was in utter shock and disbelief. For a split second, I thought, No! There must be some mistake! Then the officer told me Jason had called the police himself, so I...