Denise Huskins was kidnapped in 2015 by a man named Matthew Muller.
Her boyfriend, Aaron Quinn, was at their California home when she was taken. He said he was drugged and the kidnapper covered his eyes.
Huskins showed up safe two days after she was taken.
There was just one major problem. The police did not believe she had been kidnapped.
They called the case a hoax, not believing the couple's story. But then they found the Muller connection. He admitted to kidnapping Huskins and holding her for ransom.
Huskins sued the police, saying they compared her to the lying woman at the center of "Gone Girl" (sorry for the spoiler, but honestly get with the times).
Now, nearly two years later, Huskins is still attacked by internet trolls accusing her of faking her own kidnapping.
On Sunday, Huskins posted a screenshot on Facebook of a message she had received from a stranger.
The stranger started by asking if she was "that horrible lying woman who faked her own kidnapping."
He went on to call her a "slut," "liar" and "whore." People sure are compassionate, huh?
Huskins posted the screenshot of the note, along with an emotional message of her own.
She said reading this message triggered a PTSD response in her. Her body shook heavily and she could not hold back tears.
Congratulations, person I have never met, never heard of who hates me so much that he went out of his way to message me this disgusting, demeaning, dehumanizing outrage.
She said she had to take medication to calm down from the message.
All I did was survive, and I was criminalized for it.
Huskins wrote that she shared the message to let people know words are powerful.
Let's not meet each other with hate and anger. It truly hurts. It has profound impact on each other's lives, their feelings of safety and self worth. It doesn't help anyone. We must admit that there are many things that we don't know, even if we so strongly believe certain things. It does no one, especially ourselves, any good to blindly judge, spreading hate and anger. We may be wrong, or misinformed.
At the end of a year marked by the spread of false news and conspiracy theories, Huskins's message is very powerful.
Huskins hopes people will remember the power of their words as we go into 2017.
After an outpouring of supportive responses, she posted another status on Facebook from herself and Quinn.
We are surrounded by so many wonderful people, and that is the biggest reason why we are able to get out of bed every morning and continue to move forward rebuilding our lives.
She went on to say it's hard not to react with anger, but it's important to do so.
We must meet hate with love. We must meet ignorance with empathy.
Muller, her kidnapper, is set to be sentenced on January 19. He faces possible life in prison.
Citations: Harvard-trained attorney pleads guilty in kidnapping initially called a hoax (CBS News), Kidnap victim wrongly dubbed 'Gone Girl' copycat by cops reveals horror cyber-bullying she receives daily and how she and co-accused boyfriend are closer than ever (Daily Mail)