A sexual assault victim is asking that her name be removed from pending legislation aimed to help other survivors. Abby Honold, who is from the Twin Cities, now wants someone else to champion the bill that will provide funds to train first responders on interviewing victims of sexual assault. KTSB reported that Honold stood with Franken last month to announce this bill, and that she came to Franken’s office since her attacker, who is now serving a six-year prison sentence for rape, was an intern of the Minnesota Democrat.
Last week, after radio host Leeann Tweeden alleged that Franken had forcibly kissed her and took a photograph of him groping her while she was asleep, Honold wants another senator to quarterback this legislation. Tweeden and Franken were on a USO tour through the Middle East in 2006 when this incident occurred. Honold says she wants Franken to step aside in pushing this legislation and have Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), or anyone else, to take up the bill (via KTSB):
Just last month, Abby Honold stood side-by-side with Franken at a press conference announcing the bill.
“I was really heartbroken and disgusted, and I really wanted to send support to the victims involved,” she said.
The 22-year-old Honold first approached the senator’s office, in part, because her attacker Daniel Drill-Mellum was once an intern for Franken.
He’s now serving a six-year prison sentence for raping her after a University of Minnesota tailgate party. A nurse, who is specially trained in interviewing traumatized victims, helped detectives build their case.
“I truly believe that my rapist would not be in prison if I had not encountered the sexual assault nurse at the hospital,” Honold said.
That special training is what Franken’s bill would have funded when introduced after Thanksgiving.
But Honold said it would be irresponsible now for his office to move forward.
Since the allegations were brought against Franken, his approval ratings in Minnesota have plummeted, with only 22 percent saying he should remain in office.