Iasia Sweeting: ‘I Was Literally Stolen From My Life’ - Women in the World in Association With the New York Times - WITW
Iasia Sweeting stunned the room and received a rousing standing ovation in the David H. Koch Theater after a powerful recitation of her spoken word poem about what she calls her “journey of discovery.”
Moderator Mary Jordan, national correspondent for The Washington Post, spoke for the entire crowd: “Wow, now that is a strong woman!”
The 24-year-old Sweeting’s path to the stage was one of extraordinary hardship. At 17, she was kidnapped and held captive for more than four years in an extended-stay hotel outside Atlanta, Georgia. Abused, tortured, raped, and starved, she bore two children fathered by her captor, Calvin McIntosh. She was rescued only after McIntosh took the older child—then 15 months old and weighing only 7.5 pounds—to a hospital, where the toddler was pronounced dead on arrival. Soon afterward, authorities found Sweeting, catatonic and emaciated.