The daughters of convicted pedophile David Tweed have called on other survivors of incest and sexual and physical abuse to speak out to prevent their abuser being protected by a wall of silence. .
In this dramatic documentary on BBC One’s ‘Spotlight’ last night, the ex-wife and 4 daughters of the former international rugby star and Northern Ireland politician have opened up about the years. months of physical and sexual abuse they suffered by a man they described as “the monster behind the mask.”
Tweed, who served as a councilor for both the DUP and TUV in Ballymoney, Co Antrim, died in a motorcycle crash last October.
But it was the glowing tributes from former colleagues after his death – which were later recalled – that prompted his family to speak out, according to daughter Victoria.
“It wasn’t until he died that I had to take a stand and say compliments about the monster you guys are singing about,” she told the show.
“That’s when we all stand together and say ‘we’ve had enough.”
Amanda Brown, daughter of Margaret, Tweed’s ex-wife in a previous relationship, recounted how she witnessed Tweed beat her mother when she was a child and Margaret was pregnant with her daughter Lorraine.
“He kept her against the bathroom door suffocating her until her mother passed out,” she said of Tweed, who is 6’6″.
“He left her face in a really bad state, which she had to hide for weeks until it healed,” she said.
“My mother tried to leave a few times, but he would threaten to hurt us or take us away or even kill her,” she said.
Lorraine Tweed recalls how her father made ominous threats against her, like “I know this man, he’s going to chase you with a chainsaw and cut your head off.”
She said he was going to go on a rampage as well and in one she recalls banging her head against the wall when she was an elementary school girl after she stuck her finger in her ear to stop her mother from advising her of something.
But it wasn’t until two other women’s sexual abuse allegations were filed against Tweed that the daughters discovered that they had both been sexually abused by him since childhood.
Amanda recalls how her father “came into the room at night,” starting when she was eight years old.
“You never feel safe, even at home,” she says.
Victoria added: “We all live in fear.”
“I was petrified in the dark,” she said of her fear of a dark figure entering her bedroom at night which she later recognized as Tweed after having to reminisce about the abuse when she was 16. age.
“All I could picture was him with his face on the bed on top of me and breathing heavily.”
The sisters also revealed that their cousin Gemma Boyd had also revealed to them that she had been abused by her uncle Tweed. However, despite reporting the abuse to the police, it was never taken to court. And The Tweed sisters believe this may have been the reason why she took her own life at the age of 20.
Although Tweed was found guilty of sexually abusing his daughter and sentenced to four years in prison and four years in prison in 2013, his conviction was overturned on technical appeal and he was released. prison in 2016.
But Amanda and Lorraine, who testified against their father in court, said the process was complicated and took two years from the time he was charged to the date of his trial.
“I felt like that little kid relived it,” Lorraine said of facing her father in court.
“You feel nauseous.”
Amanda also said she felt she was in the prisoner’s dock and not her father’s when she was questioned by his defense team.
“I felt like I did something wrong, the way I was talked to,” she said.
Meanwhile, former Court of Appeals Judge Sir John Gillen, who has looked at how sexual assault cases are handled by courts in Northern Ireland, told the programme; “If we want to have adequate protections for the women, girls and children in our communities then we all need to stand up and complainants to come forward and bring these issues to the fore. judicial system.”
Meanwhile, Amanda urged other survivors of physical and sexual abuse to speak out.
“Our silence protected him,” she said of her father.
But now that the family has spoken out about their father, Amanda says a weight has been lifted off their shoulders.
“We can only grow stronger with each passing day,” she said.
https://www.independent.ie/irish-news/daughters-of-paedophile-and-former-rugby-international-david-tweed-describe-monster-behind-the-mask-41452554.html Daughter of pedophile and former rugby international David Tweed describes the ‘monster behind the mask’