An American citizen is issuing a warning and has posted photos of her bruised face after she was allegedly assaulted at a bus stop while living in Spain.
Andrea Sicignano, 27, said she was attacked in the days before Christmas after going out with a friend at night, reported The Sun.
The woman, who had been living in Spain for six months, said she was approached by an unknown man while at the bus stop in Madrid, according to the Sun. Sicignano said she got on the wrong bus and was approached by the stranger at 4 a.m., who offered to help her.
When she attempted to leave, the man became violent and hit her until she couldn’t defend herself any longer. After that, the suspect then sexually assaulted her.
“This is going to be hard to read for those of you that know me, but I need you all to hear my voice,” wrote Sicignano in a long Facebook post on Dec. 19, which was accompanied by the photos. The post was shared thousands of times.
“It’s unclear exactly what happened next, but as soon as I started to realize I could be in danger, I tried to leave. But this man became forceful and violent towards me,” she wrote. “As I fought, he started to beat me. I was screaming and fighting with all of the power I could muster. I desperately tried to reach for my phone but he called out in Spanish, ‘I have your phone, you can’t call anyone.’”
Asking for Help
After the assault, she said I “ran barefoot into the street, screaming at the top of my lungs for help.”
“ I was waving frantically, and yet 3 or 4 cars drove past me. Finally, one stopped. I ran to it, screaming. Blood covered my face, hair, and jacket. A kind stranger—whom I’ll never have the chance to thank—called the ambulance and tried to soothe me while we waited for them to arrive,” Sicignano stated.
She added: “I was rushed to the hospital. Alone. Terrified. And unable to contact anyone for hours. “My nose fractured in four places. I had bruises and scratches covering my body. I speak on behalf of anyone who has experienced this hell—and on behalf of those whose voices have been silenced.”
Police apparently arrested the suspect, and she “looked into the man’s eyes and picked him from a police lineup,” according to her Facebook post.
“There will be a trial in the future, but for now, he is behind bars and will stay there until his judgment day. Later, watching video footage from the bus ride, I watched the man watch me throughout the journey,” Sicignano added.
She added: “I am so incredibly lucky to be writing this right now. I am overcome with relief and even more with the feeling of a responsibility to share my story. I speak on behalf of anyone who has experienced this hell – and on behalf of those whose voices have been silenced. This story could have ended so differently. Things must change.”