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Special Assignment: "I survived Greg Peterson"

SALT LAKE CITY (ABC 4 News) - Two women who claim they were raped by a GOP fundraiser tell their story of survival.
SALT LAKE CITY (ABC 4 News) - Two women, both survivors of a crime that eventually saw their accuser, a high profile Republican take his own life rather than face charges.

The two women were among the four victims of Greg Peterson, the GOP fundraiser who was charged with multiple felonies involving rape, sodomy and kidnapping.

The women who want to remain anonymous wanted their story told for two reasons. They wanted people to know it's not easy finding justice and to let the pubic know the scars they carry are real.

"I clicked yes and (then)we chatted on Facebook," says Alicia, not her real name.
The person she clicked was Peterson.

"There was never a phone conversation until the night he asked me to go out," she says.

The second victim met Peterson at an LDS singles event.

"He seemed friendly, really outgoing and just friendly," says Janice, not her real name.

None of the the women knew of Peterson, the well-known GOP fundraiser. He hosted barbeques at his Heber City cabin for prominent republicans. On his Facebook page were pictures of himself with the likes of Governor Herbert, U.S. Senator Mike Lee, Congressional candidate Mia Love and even one with Mitt Romney.

"In the movie theater there was a lot of touching and pulling very physical and sexual," recalls Alicia.

After that first date at the movies, Alicia thought he was taking her home. But Peterson had different ideas. She said Peterson pointed to his console inside his pickup truck as they were driving.

"A weapon, a weapon was with him," Alicia says.

They arrived at his cabin. and Alicia sensed trouble.

"He was a powerful politician," she says. "He had checked my status and knew I was here illegally. There was no way to get out ... there was no way for me to call the police or anybody."

Inside his bedroom, Alicia claimed she was repeatedly raped and sodomized.

"He had tremendous power that there wasn't anything I could do about it," she says.

The next day Peterson is accused of taking her to his mother's house near Logan. She claims she was kept there for three days before returning to Salt Lake City.

"I remember reporting to her I was so afraid of what he was doing to my body and I am scared of him," she says. "(But) she goes in the house."

She says his mother didn't believe her claims saying that her son had been with many other woman who slept and dated him.

"He took all that he had of my life he could do whatever he wanted to do," Alicia says.

The second rape victim met Peterson at an LDS singles event and Janice (not her real name) says Peterson began talking with her first.

Eventually she agreed to go with him to get something to eat. But once inside his pickup truck Janice knew there was something wrong.
"He started talking about the gun he had in his car," she says.
She found herself headed to Peterson's cabin.

"His demeanor went from friendly to just this very gruff, forceful not happy," she says.

Inside Peterson's cabin, Janice claimed she was pushed around, beaten and raped.

"You didn't have a choice if you didn't do what he asked you and how he wanted it, he would hit you and have to do it again," she says. "Then he'd go okay, that's good. Just the way he would say it in his words and the tone in his language and the look in his eyes, it's frightening."

She claimed she wanted to go home but Peterson wouldn't let her go.

"He finally fell asleep and I just laid there and just stared out the window and watched the sun come up," she says.

But by mid-day Peterson took her back to Salt Lake County and dropped her off.

"When he dropped me off he gave me a hug," she recalled. "(He said) call me sometime or something like that."

But with his first victim, Peterson who also gave her a ride back into Salt Lake County reminded her about her legal status.

"That's what he continued to tell me that he was going to get me deported if I would tell anybody," Alicia says. "I was feeling lost with everything just scared embarrassed, humiliated. how can I tell anybody about this. I couldn't even tell my own self."

In part two of this story, (Tuesday) both women tell of their next challenge and trusting those in charge would bring about justice. They learned it wasn't easy.

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