School and child welfare officials in Virginia, blinded by radical gender ideology, allowed a 14-year-old girl to be sex trafficked twice and horrifically abused in an unfathomable chain of events.
Virginia’s Appomattox County High School concealed a teen’s newly asserted transgender identity from her parents setting off a chain of events that led to the girl, Sage, being sexually assaulted countless times by adults and male peers as she traversed an odyssey of “court-ordered” protection, The Federalist reports.
After disappearing for nine days, the FBI found Sage in nearby Maryland held captive by a known sexual predator who had subjected her to brutal sexual abuse. Rather than return her to a family worried sick over her disappearance, a judge determined she was better off in a state children’s facility where she would be housed with the boys in alignment with her new gender identity, an identity Sage’s parents did not affirm.
The judge who refused to reunite her with her family cited their resistance to the new gender identity as his reason.
Sage’s adopted mother Michele, who is actually her biological grandmother, reportedly provided Sage with a safe, clean and typically middle-class home, without even a hint of dysfunction, making the Maryland judge’s assertion of abuse nonsensical.
At her high school, Sage was known to staff by a male name, and was encouraged to use the boy’s bathroom as affirmation of her newly chosen gender identity, unknown to Michele and hidden by the school.
But school records show Sage was threatened and physically abused in the boy’s bathroom, and Sage later revealed to her mother that the boys promised to rape her at knifepoint and beat her. After this incident, the school finally told Michele about the abuse but neglected to reveal the alternate gender identity.
It wasn’t until Michele found Sage with a school hall pass with a boy’s name that Sage finally revealed everything to her mother. That night, not wanting to return to school, Sage disappeared for nine days.
According to The Federalist report, some of the transgender websites recommended by Sage’s school counselor were actively exploited by sexual predators looking for vulnerable targets for sex trafficking. Sage had been lured to meet a sex trafficker by other predators posing as teenagers on the site.
As horrific as all this was, it pales compared to what came next.
After the FBI rescued Sage, Michele and her husband came to pick her up, only to discover she was being held in juvenile detention as a runaway, not a victim of sex trafficking and kidnapping. There was a court date scheduled for later that afternoon.
And Sage’s appointed public defender, Aneesa Khan, was on a mission. She wanted to use Sage’s case to establish a legal precedent for declaring a parent’s failure to affirm a child’s chosen gender identity as child abuse, triggering the full force of the state’s child protective services.
Sage would later tell her mother that Khan “told me to tell the judge my parents hit me, starved me.” Sage also told Michele that Khan “didn’t care how much [Sage] had to lie…but they were going to win this case” to remove Sage from her parents’ custody and place her in a Maryland foster home that would affirm her as male.
Khan opened the proceedings by declaring on Sage’s behalf that she did not wish to return home and had been “both emotionally and physically abused by his parents in connection with [his] expressed male gender identity and desire to live as a trans male.”
The trauma of having been sex trafficked as a 14-year-old girl was ignored entirely while Khan, and the judge, Robert Kershaw, seemed intent on setting an example for any parent who dared to question the gender ideology narrative.
Michele and her husband were quickly cleared of the abuse charges, but the damage was done. The simple allegation of abuse was used to justify taking Sage from them.
The girl remained under Kershaw’s supervision for the next two months, housed with juvenile males according to her “expressed male gender,” where she was bullied, and physically and sexually abused by the young men she was forced to live with.
While Sage was enduring this nightmarish existence, Kershaw and Khan were holding repeated hearings focused on Sage’s adopted gender identity as Khan attempted to build her case against her parents for “gender identity abuse.” Kershaw and Khan went so far as to bring in two Appomattox County High School counselors to testify against Sage’s parents.
When Kershaw grudgingly conceded that Sage’s parents had a legal right to custody, report The Federalist, “Kershaw opined at length that ‘more likely than not’ Sage had ‘endured emotional abuse and neglect by his parents,’ including ‘misgendering’ and ‘misnaming, Astonishingly, Kershaw cited as evidence of parental abuse ‘running away from Virginia to Maryland,’ when in fact Sage was abducted, raped, and trafficked across state lines.”
Michele pleaded with the court to permit Sage to receive treatment for the trauma she had endured, and even had a placement arranged at a state-approved, highly regarded program for young survivors of sexual abuse.
Kershaw refused because the program would treat Sage as a girl.
Khan then reportedly convinced Sage her mother didn’t want her anymore because she was transgender. None of the numerous letters or countless phone messages Michele sent to Sage ever reached her.
Believing her mother didn’t want her and knowing she couldn’t handle any more of the court-ordered placement Kershaw arranged – where she would again be housed in lock-down with boys – Sage decided to flee.
She escaped the dangerous, state-sponsored climate of dysfunction by running away to Texas to meet who she thought was a 16-year-old online friend, only to fall into the hands of another sex trafficker who raped, starved, drugged, and brutalized her while selling her to men for sex over several months. Only by the sheerest of luck, she was eventually rescued by police.
All along, Sage was denied mental health treatment unless it involved affirming a transgender identity she was already backing away from. During one of Michele’s visits, Sage asked her to secretly buy her some girl’s clothing, as she “didn’t want to be a boy anymore, but was afraid to tell the doctors.”
The counseling she did receive from professionals at the children’s home reportedly pressured her to tell her mother “she wanted a ‘gender affirming’ mastectomy.”
In the end, between the school and social services, a troubled young girl was turned into a deeply damaged young girl with enough horror stories to fill a host of lives.
Sage is home now, following a year of abuse by the system, and this, only after the intervention of a dedicated attorney who exposed a great deal of the judicial malfeasance.
Sage is reportedly tormented by nightmares, struggles to control her fear of others, and has a long way to go to recover from her experiences.
Agenda-driven ideologues sacrificed Sage to gain an upper hand in their quest to usurp parents as the rightful determiners of a child’s future. In their zeal, they saw nothing but their goal to establish a parent’s unwillingness to engage in “gender affirming” behavior as a form of prosecutable child abuse.
Kershaw and Khan wanted to make history. In a way, they have.
Now new bill in Sage’s name is being introduced in the Virginia House this week, also known as the Child Protection Act, which would require schools to involve parents in the gender issues of their children and protect the rights of parents to raise a child according to biological sex.
While too late to save Sage from the gender identity predators, Sage’s Law will go a long way to ensuring children will be safe from both sexual predators and myopic ideologues with the power of the government behind them.