Victim of sexual exploitation by her female hockey coach speaks out – BC
Chanelle Petrie was only 15 years old when she started a sexual relationship with the 39-year-old assistant coach of her Kamloops hockey team.
Heidi Ferber pleaded guilty this month to charges of sexual exploitation and sexual interference with a person under 16.
But due to a publication ban, Petrie could not be identified as the victim. However, in a rare move, a judge lifted that publication ban today and Petrie is now speaking out.
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“I was taken advantage of and it wasn’t my fault,” she told CFJC via Skype from Calgary.
Petrie knows there might be some backlash from her decision to speak out, but she said it’s worth it.
“Maybe for every three people that backlash, there’s two that it saves a life,” she said. “As long as I’m helping someone, that’s all that matters.”
Petrie said at first, her relationship with Ferber started with the older woman gaining her trust, and then drawing her away from others. The relationship lasted from November 2010 to July 2011.
Once the relationship ended, Petrie told her mother, who then told police.
“I figured no time will ever be good enough,” said Petrie, about telling her story. “No time will ever be good enough for me to heal and completely be over it, but you [have] to take what you get, and what you get from it you’ve got to use. So I’m just hoping whatever she gets it’s the right amount and the judge can make the right decision.”
She said she is also speaking out to help other kids who may have gone through, or be in this situation, and let them know they’re not alone.
Ferber will be sentenced on April 2.
– With files from CFJC News
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