Day One (Amsterdam) – February 6, 2017

Follow Mathijs Pennings on Twitter and click on the English Translation tab to get current info on todays trial.

What an interesting day that isn’t going to be over until midnight tonight in Amsterdam time. There were so many media outlets wanting interviews that I decided to just clump them into one room and do a group interview. (Just like we see in the TV shows or even, at the White House.) So had a small one at 3 pm and then another one at 4 pm. I truly didn’t think there were so many different news people out here. Rob was even surprised. I’m sure the hotel might not have been prepared. We had called them earlier so they could help set up for us.  In reflecting to Rob later, with the help of the hotel, we were able to create our own press conference.

When I saw AC for the first time, many asked what it felt like. I couldn’t answer yesterday as my brain was too full and I hadn’t ‘unpacked’ it yet.  But now that I have had time to think and reflect, the words that come into my head is ‘relief and satisfaction’.  I did think he looked younger that portrayed in the artist sketches that I had seen.  Some might think that would be a funny word of description.  But if I tried to explain it, this is how it would sound. The words that I felt were ‘relief and satisfaction’.  

And these are the reasons why:  

  • because the trial here in the Netherlands has been postponed a numerous, it was good to see that the trial was in its 5th session day
  • we were able to see what AC really looks like
  • we were able to hear his voice
  • to know that other victims and families were able to find strength to share their testimony of what happened to them to show the courts that they want to see the person responsible held accountable for their actions

During the trial today, the words of “I remain silent” will be etched in my brain forever. You would think that if a person accused of a crime believes he is innocent or not guilty, he/she would speak up and share the reasons why.  These are many observations of court today and were put out to the media gallery.

** Aydin appears to be smiling in court while judge is speaking to him and the courts about this. Judge calls him out ‘This is not a game. This is serious. Why do you not speak?”

** AC response to judges questioning: “I remain silent”

A takeaway for me is that there were many victims from all over the world and that extortion or sextortion as we now call it was quite evident.

One of the main questions that continues to stick in my head is this one – ” How did you feel when you saw Mr Coban in person?” “How angry do you feel?” “What do you want as a consequence for Mr Coban” “How do you feel when he does not speak?”

Here are my answers that I quite strongly speak out loud:

1. How did you feel when you saw Mr Coban in person?

My first reaction when I saw him was – “Wow!! So that’s really him. The #@$%” It was quick and it was brief. He entered the courtroom. Turned to probably say hello to the other member of the defence team and then sat down. Did he know I was there? I am sure he did. It would be more interesting to find out what he was thinking when he found I would be in the courtroom or even in the Netherlands for this trial. ( I was in the actual courtroom to see him, but then went somewhere else to listen to the trial with a translator. Seeing the back of his only for the rest of the morning.) The short glimpse of him certainly made this part of the journey more real.

2. “How angry do you feel?”

I have said this more than once, I am beyond anger and don’t hold it or feel it at this point in time. Angry gets nothing accomplished and there is more power in being calm and rational. I feel sadness for Mr Coban and any other individual who feels that they have to inflict behaviours such as this onto others. Especially young others. Because as we all know now, the feeling of being victimized spreads more than to the victims themselves as families and friends are now part of the group. I was angry at Amanda for not being strong enough to hold on in this world. Angry doesn’t help to change the ways we speak, enforce rules, change legislation or help us heal. Angry doesn’t allow us to be a voice that others will listen to. I

3. “What do you want as a consequence for Mr Coban”

No idea. I trust that the justice system will see all the evidence, listen to the testimonies and make a decision which we will all hopefully) be satisfied with. One of the majors would be to take internet access away forever for Mr Coban as he has proven that he cannot use it appropriately.

4. “How do you feel when he does not speak?”

It is more interesting to see his words when he does decide to utter some. The words ‘rubbish’ came out today from him.

That’s all for now. #Justice4Amanda and all the other victims.


About Carol Todd

Being the mother of Amanda Todd has lead me on this journey shortly after Amanda's death on October 10, 2012. Amanda's prolific You Tube video has been viewed over 33 million times. Through this video, there has been an increased awareness about cyberbullying, social media safety and mental health.
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