Andres Gutierrez, NBC 5 News
Sexual assault takes a toll on its victims but the new Sexual Asssault Legal Services and Assistance program is offering a free and confidential hotline to help survivors.
A new hotline is providing legal help to sexual assault victims in Texas.
The Sexual Assault Legal Services and Assistance program is setting up the free and confidential hotline to make sure victims' legal needs are met.
"Legal advice and representation for sexual assault survivors is key to healing and recovery for survivors," said Torie Camp, deputy director of the Texas Association Against Sexual Assault.
Christi Cameron, who was sexually assaulted days before Christmas in 1999 in New York, said her biggest advice for victims of sexual assault is to not remain silent.
"It will eat you alive, and there is help," she said.
NBC 5 generally does not identify the victims of sexual assault, but Cameron agreed to discuss her case.
Cameron moved to New York City soon after graduating from Southern Methodist University to pursue a career in broadcasting. She said she was walking home from work when a man attacked her.
"I screamed, 'Somebody help me,'" she said. "He instantly hit me in the face and grabbed my neck [and said], 'Don't do it again or I'll snap your neck and I'll kill you,'" Cameron said.
"He slipped his arm around me and said, 'Don't scream. I've got a gun,'" she said. "At the bottom of the staircase he beat, raped and sodomized me."
Cameron, who has since moved back to the Metroplex and married, said the attack was a traumatizing event that left her looking for help.
"You read all the time, women don't get over this and I told her that I would get over this and it wouldn't define me," she said.
New York City police eventually captured her attacker in 2001.
The number for the new confidential legal hotline is 888-343-4414.