Lesson 1 of 7 - free your true Self to guide you

News article

Few in Washington city are
angry at acid hoax woman

By Nigel Duara, Associated Press Writer via Yahoo News - 9/17/10

The Web address of this article is http://sfhelp.org/gwc/news/gwc2.htm

  Updated  April 11, 2015

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        This news clip illustrates the behavior of a typical Grown Wounded Child (GWC). See my comments after the clip. The links and hilights below are mine. - Peter Gerlach, MSW

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VANCOUVER, Wash. The scars on her face were real, but her story about being splashed with acid was a horrific hoax.

A day after Bethany Storro's revelation turned the victim who drew worldwide sympathy into a curiosity and the object of much derision, few who banded together here to collect money for her medical bills were angry with her on Friday.

They were just puzzled: What could bring the 28-year-old grocery store worker to disfigure herself in such a public way, and invent a tale about a black woman assaulting her with a cup of acid?

Friend John Pax, whose gym hosted a fundraiser that netted nearly $1,000, said no one has asked for their money back yet. "No one's angry," he said. "We just worry about her."

Storro's parents, Joe and Nancy Neuwelt, apologized Friday outside their Vancouver home, saying they were "deeply sorry" and adding that all money donated to their daughter will be returned.

Joe Neuwelt said they believed their daughter's account until she admitted to police Thursday that her injuries were self-inflicted. "There was no reason to doubt her at all," he said as he and his wife took turns reading from a statement.

Nancy Neuwelt said she doesn't know why her daughter fabricated the story but acknowledged Storro is "obviously dealing with some deep internal emotional and psychological problems."

"Now she can begin to heal because the truth has been revealed," her mother said.

The Neuwelts said they plan to get their daughter "the medical attention that she needs and the counseling that she deserves."

Some in the black community in this leafy city on the banks of the Columbia River were saddened that someone claiming to be a crime victim had again placed an African-American in the role of villain.

"I'm not angry at all, and the reason is that this has happened many times before, unfortunately," said Margo Bryant, president of the Vancouver branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People.

Bryant praised the police, and said she didn't hear of any blacks in the area being questioned.

"At least (police) were willing to accept that this individual was not telling the truth, or not automatically accept she was telling the truth because she is white," Bryant said.

Police on Friday were planning to turn the case over to prosecutors. Storro could face charges of filing a false police report.

Storro told police a stranger in a ponytail accosted her near a small park on Aug. 30, uttering the now-infamous words "Hey, pretty girl, want something to drink?" before scorching her face.

Instantly, her tale grabbed the headlines. And only grew when she appeared before reporters, her head bandaged and alongside her parents, to ask a nameless, faceless attacker: Why?

Storro said it was only chance and, perhaps, divine providence that led her to purchase a pair of sunglasses just minutes earlier.

Umpqua Bank took up a collection to help her pay medical bills, raising "a few thousand" dollars, said bank spokeswoman Lani Hayward. By Friday, no one asked for their donation back, she said.

Police grew more suspicious, as inconsistencies in her story began to add up.

They searched her home and her car. They wanted to know why no witnesses had seen an assailant. Why didn't the splash pattern of the acid jibe with Storro's account. And, finally, why would Storro be wearing sunglasses just after 7 p.m.?

Under questioning, she folded.

But the question of her motive remains unanswered.

Pax, the gym owner, said the tall tale wouldn't make city residents more resistant to help out the next time someone is in need.

"This is a close-knit community," he said. "It's safe here. If something like this happened again, we wouldn't hesitate to do it again."

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Comments

        This news clip follows a major national human interest story about a young American woman who claimed a stranger threw acid in her face without explanation. Her later admission that she lied publicly and damaged her own face suggests desperation to be noticed with compassion. If details about her personal life are revealed in the media, they will probably indicate that she has survived a traumatic childhood.

        Self-damaging behavior like this is widespread among psychologically-wounded people. Often they have no rational explanation for such behavior, because the well-intentioned personality subselves that cause it distort reality and are not "logical." By definition, if this typical "Grown Wounded Child's" true Self  were guiding her, she never would have done what she did.

        Note the implication that the author of this news item knows nothing of personality subselves, and is left to report that her motive for this self-injury is unknown. What the media usually describes is romantic trouble, health, and/or financial stresses, or "a history of mental illness." Reporters rarely investigate for child-hood trauma, or connect it with the "bizarre" behavior - P. K. Gerlach

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Updated  April 11, 2015