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Alleged torture victim shares his story
Jessica Earle, ctvedmonton.ca
Published Saturday, August 28, 2010 6:40PM MDT
Less than a week after his former roommate and business partner was arrested in Edmonton for aggravated assault and forcible confinement, Dustin LaFortune is speaking out about what he says happened to him.
The 26-year-old captured national headlines after he was dumped at a Saskatchewan hospital last April, suffering from starvation, burns and mutilation to his tongue and lower lip.
From the Wascana Rehabilitation Centre in Regina, LaFortune told a local CTV reporter he was abused from years.
"I just got nightmares because he'd beat me so hard with a cane or whip me with a leash or something like that and it was every day," he said of his attacker.
LaFortune didn't tell anyone because he says he feared for the safety of his loved ones.
"I was just really scared of him… but I always made sure my friends and family were safe."
While LaFortune says his rehabilitation is going well, he admits he is still negotiating the long-term disabilities he will have to live with.
"Apparently I have a whole bunch of brain damage," he said.
"The neurologist came to me and showed me pictures of a human skull and it had little PET marks on it with all the holes and cracks in my head."
He says he was overjoyed when he heard an arrest had been made and says he is willing to testify against his attacker in court.
"I was so happy – I didn't get a wink of sleep," he said.
"I just want to see him suffer – anything I can do to make that happen will be great."
LaFortune says he will head to Victoria after he is released from the rehabilitation centre on Monday. He says he's excited to see his family on the Island and will still be an out-patient who needs to consult with specialists and physiotherapists.
"I'm just happy I survived. I was in rough shape there for a long time," he said.
LaFortune says he still wants to get married and hopes to spend more time with his eight-year-old daughter.
He expressed thanks to the more than 50,000 Facebook friends who offered support throughout his ordeal.
With Files from CTV Regina