Irish-born Alisha Jordan, the victim of a brutal assault in the Bronx in 2012, has told her attacker that he “failed miserably to destroy her.”
The young County Meath native and GAA star was violently attacked as she was walking home after a night out with friends in the Woodlawn area of the Bronx. She was severely injured, suffering two broken cheekbones, a broken nose, fractures to her orbital bones, smashed teeth and nerve damage that left her blind for two weeks.
"I was hit in the face with a slab of concrete, all for no reason at all," Jordan said, while reading a victim impact statement ahead of her assailant’s sentencing last week, the Irish Independent reports.
“I suffered extensive injuries, including a fractured skull which required 10 metal plates inserted into my head, broken cheek bones, broken orbital bones, a crushed nose and cracked teeth – and all for no reason at all,” she said.
She told the court that after the attack she suffered nightmares and panic attacks and said her mental state at the time was “worrying.” She said she couldn’t look in the mirror for months. She says she gradually regained her confidence with the support of her family and friends. She also received counseling to help her cope with the trauma.
"My scars are proof that I have beaten what tried to hurt me," she said.
Despite being told she would never play again, she returned to the New York team for the All-Ireland Ladies' Junior Football Championship, and ended up scoring the winning point in the 2013 New York decider.
Jordan said that she began playing football again only two months after plastic surgery and nine months later was lifting a trophy.
The 23-year-old said that she wished her attacker could have "watched me lift that trophy" so he "could see how invincible I am.”
Jordan, who also had to deal with the recent death of her father, told her attacker that as a man, her father was “incomparable to a low-life like you.”
"You are a lot less scary without the concrete in your hands," she said.
Jordan thanked her legal teams and the detectives in the case and said that she and her mother had been left with worry and the financial burden of the attack.
Kevin Bynum pleaded guilty to assault and was jailed for eight years, to be followed by five years probation, at the Bronx Supreme Court.
Surrounded by a large group of friends, Jordan broke down in tears as her attacker told Judge Peter Benitez that he was sorry for what he had done.
"I didn't know what had happened that night,” said Bynum.
"I had been drinking and partying with my friends," he said. "I didn't know that I had hurt anybody."
The judge commended Jordan’s recovery.
He told her: “I see you as victorious.”