Paris Hilton shared details of the alleged abuse she suffered as a teen at boarding school while testifying in court. The heiress appeared in a Utah court Monday in support of a state bill to end abuse in congregate care facilities, according to E! In her testimony against Provo Canyon School, Hilton spoke of her nightmarish experience at the institution.
"My name is Paris Hilton, I am an institutional abuse survivor and I speak today on behalf of the hundreds of thousands of children currently in residential care facilities across the United States," she said, according to People. "For the past 20 years, I have had a recurring nightmare where I'm kidnapped in the middle of the night by two strangers, strip-searched, and locked in a facility. I wish I could tell you that this haunting nightmare was just a dream, but it is not."
In her testimony, Hilton recounted the verbal, mental, and physical abuse she allegedly endured on a daily basis. "I was cut off from the outside world and stripped of all my human rights," she said.
"Without a diagnosis, I was forced to consume medication that made me feel numb and exhausted," Hilton continued. "I didn't breathe fresh air or see the sunlight for 11 months. There was zero privacy — every time I would use the bathroom or take a shower — it was monitored," Hilton continued. "At 16 years old — as a child — I felt their piercing eyes staring at my naked body. I was just a kid and felt violated every single day."
The reality TV star, who was a rebellious teen, attended Provo Canyon School for 11 months. She left in 1999 when she turned 18 but chose not to speak of her experience until last year, when she came out with her allegations against the school in her YouTube Originals documentary, "This Is Paris."
In her testimony, Hilton said many children suffered the same abuse she did for years after she left. Changes were only implemented after the release of her documentary, she added.
"I'm going to be honest," she said. "Talking about something so personal was and is still terrifying. And I cannot go to sleep at night knowing that there are children that are enduring the same abuse that I and so many others went through. Neither should you. I am proof that money doesn't protect against abuse."
Provo Canyon School responded to the accusations at the time in a statement explaining that the establishment was sold by its previous owners in August 2000.
"We do not condone or promote any form of abuse," a statement read. "Any and all alleged/suspected abuse is reported immediately to our state regulatory authorities, law enforcement and Child Protective Services, as required. We are committed to providing high-quality care to youth with special, and often complex, emotional, behavioral and psychiatric needs."
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