Ashley Foster: PBC woman who says she was a victim of sex abuse to now defend herself in court

Woman says she was abused by cousin

BOYNTON BEACH, Fla. - A Palm Beach County woman who says she was molested by her own cousin for years says that cousin is now taking legal action against her.

Ashley Foster had a strong case against her cousin with help from investigators at the Boynton Beach Police Department. But they could never prosecute because the statute of limitations had run out.

When Foster finally found the courage to go to authorities about what she says was years of sex abuse, it was sixty days too late. She says she never got her day in court. "I feel like I'm being victimized all over again," she said.

Now, Foster is headed to court, but to defend herself against the cousin she says molested her. That man is petitioning for a civil injunction that would bar Ashley from publicly using his name or photographs.

"Since he didn't get prosecuted, it won't show up unless I do something about it," said Foster.

Last year, she started a Facebook page - and an online campaign - to change state law to eliminate the statute of limitations in cases like hers - and it worked. She told her story to lawmakers, using her cousin's name and pictures all along the way.

"She has a right to say his name and talk about it and warn people of it and that's exactly what she did," said Darlene Foster, Ashley's mother.

"My picture appeared on Facebook as 'a predator', which I have never been arrested, prosecuted, or convicted of," Foster's cousin writes In Broward County court documents.

"He probably feels like he has no other choice but to handle it this way," said legal analyst and attorney Michelle Suskauer.  "We'll see what the court does."

The cousin's allegations of stalking and defamation of character may be rejected by the judge.

Foster, meanwhile, is preparing to face her cousin for the first time in years. She says after staying silent for so long, she will never be silenced again.

"His name has to be put in it so that people to know that it's real," she said.

Foster said she would take her Facebook page down if a judge ordered that. She says the mission of that page was to help change state law, which it did.

Calls for comment from Foster's cousin went unanswered Wednesday.