How raped girl’s 2,500 personalities helped convict her monster dad
The hundreds of personalties created by a little girl raped repeatedly by her father helped convict him decades later.
Jeni Haynes was the victim of a 10-year-long campaign of abuse by her father Richard.
Starting when she was just four years old Jeni created up to 2,500 different personalities to try and deal with the daily sexual abuse.
The different personalities allowed her to cope with the physical and emotional pain she experienced.
In effect, she was protected by a psychological army – 2,500 different ‘alters’ who would take over her body during the abuse which took place at their family home in the Sydney suburbs.
And when police finally started investigating it was those 'alters' which helped convict her rapist father.
Multiple Personality Disorder, also known as Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID), was once viewed with disbelief – including by the psychiatric profession.
But as psychiatrist Dr George Blair-West said it is now not only considered a genuine medical condition but an ingenious one.
He said: "There is nothing wrong with Jeni’s human mind or any other person who suffers from DID.
"Their mind is just coming up with an incredibly sophisticated, clever solution to a scenario that most of us could not begin to understand or relate to."
Dr Blair-West has been treating Ms Haynes for over twenty years.
He told 60 Minutes that when children like Jeni are subjected to significant traumas prior to the age of eight, they are able to split off parts of their mind into multiple personalities.
He said: "The thing that seems to push the mind to do this more than anything else is realising you have no way out.
"Nobody's there to save you, you're on your own, and you have to come up with a solution that is entirely of your own."
The police investigation was helped by the fact that each of her personalities lived different aspects of the trauma – giving her an incredibly detailed recollection of the abuse.
"She has a memory unlike yours or my memory," Dr Blair-West explained.
"Her alters are living in different time space realities, effectively. Particularly those younger ones. What Jeni does, is she can go to the part that was there then and that part will tell you exactly what happened, like it was yesterday."
There was little physical evidence against 74-year-old Richard Haynes.
But his daughter's body was a crime scene. She required major surgeries on her bowel, coccyx and anus to repair the physical damage caused by her father.
In 2017 Haynes was extradited from the United Kingdom and charged with multiple counts of rape, buggery and indecent assault of his daughter.
It was agreed that the evidence in the case against Haynes would be too traumatic for a jury, and would be heard by a judge alone.
Haynes pleaded not guilty to all charges. But after just two hours of his daughter giving evidence as 'Symphony', one of her personalities, he changed his plea.
The decision to allow the multiple personalities to give evidence in that manner was a legal first.
Speaking on 60 Minutes Liz Hayes asked: "When you decided to give evidence, how did you decide between all of your alter personalities who was going to do and say what?"
Jeni Haynes replied: "We didn’t, the plan is whoever has the right answer will come out and tell it."
As a victim of childhood sexual abuse Ms Haynes was entitled to anonymity.
She waived it, determined the world would not only hear her story, but know who her abuser was."
Richard Haynes will be sentenced on May 31.
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