“For people out in the world to know that you can’t do stuff like this and get away with it. And for women who have been abused, for women who have been assaulted, for them to not live in fear of speaking their truth. No matter who the person is.”
In a new interview with The Daily Beast, Kenneth Petty’s sexual assault victim, who for safety purposes is referred to simply as Jennifer, opened up about the turmoil she’s dealt with not only in the many years since she reported that he raped her at knifepoint when they were teenagers, but also since he began a serious relationship with Nicki Minaj.
Jennifer recently made news after tearfully taking to her social media, asking Petty and his famous wife to “Tell your f*ckin people to leave my family alone. Don’t call my f*ckin family. Don’t call my brothers. Don’t call anybody. Leave me and my family the f*ck alone!” In her conversation with The Daily Beast, she detailed the ways in which her life had been turned upside down by the rape and the misinformation spread about it. She alleges that people connected to Petty and Minaj, including members of her own family, spent months harassing her last year, to the point where she moved three times and eventually shared that video message to the notable couple.
“I’m hoping for the truth to come out, and whatever comes from that truth, to let it be,” Jennifer said, adding, “after everything that has happened, it’s like, these people were willing to sacrifice me so this guy could remain in the public eye. I feel like my family was willing to sacrifice me.”
Her truth is that she was 16 when Petty accosted her while walking to school, holding a knife to her back. He allegedly took her to his home where he raped her at knifepoint before she was able to flee after hitting him in the head with a bottle. She reported the incident immediately after it occurred, and even then, people were protecting Petty more than her. Her family was harassed so much her adoptive aunt tried to take her to get the charges dropped. His parents even told her adoptive family that the two were dating.
“My family allowed his mother and father to take me to go see a district attorney and pretend like [they were] my aunt and uncle,” she told the publication. “I think I kind of always just felt like people wanted me to be a liar.”
She would eventually move to Florida when things became too volatile. And as for Petty, he was convicted for the attack in 1995 on multiple charges, including attempted rape in the first degree, assault in the second degree, unlawful imprisonment in the second degree and criminal possession of a weapon. He served just under four years in prison.
All these years later, she’s being harassed again by people that both she and Petty are connected to. One individual she mentioned named Barry actually put her in touch with Minaj. The rapper, she alleges, offered to help her out “if there’s anything you need.” It’s her belief that the star wanted to talk about a non-disclosure agreement. Jennifer said she just wanted the star to know her truth, claiming she told Minaj, “Listen. I just need you to know, woman to woman, this really happened.”
After that, the women didn’t speak again, and more people (those who wanted to get in good with Minaj) started getting in touch with Jennifer offering her money to recant her rape allegation, with Barry even appearing in front of her home with a letter he typed saying she lied.
“I came outside and sat in the car, and he pulled out the letter and the $20,000 out of his middle console and put the money on my lap,” Jennifer said. “And I held it in my hands, and I put it on the floor in the passenger seat. And I told him, ‘I’m not taking it. I don’t want it.’”