Ex-Prostitute Shares Story of Hope

A former Valley prostitute shared her story of hitting rock-bottom and rebounding to recovery in observance of October as "Prostitution Awareness Month."
``I would do just about anything for just about any price," said Jeanne Allen, sho spent five long years on the streets, hooked on crack and heroin. She said that chapter in her life was lonely and dark.

``Get in and out of cars with men I didn't know, never knowing if I would come out alive," she said. ``It's a very scary lifestyle."

Out of a car, straight to a dopehouse, then right back out again, Allen said it was a vicious cycle of destruction.

``I've had guns held to my head, I've been raped by a couple of men at a time. I've been beaten down. I had one instance where the guy pushed me out of the car after he was done and came back to beat me up some more. And you know what I did? I got up, walked to the nearest corner, got in the next car and did it again."

Allen said there really wasn't anything she wouldn't do, and her self worth was destroyed.

``My amounts started out high in the beginning, but as I got more into the drugs, the dates got cheaper and I lowered myself to levels I never thought I would."

Allen was busted at least eight times for prostitution and other crimes. Her last arrest was in June 2005.

Phoenix has some of the toughest prostitution laws in the country, but the city also offers diversion programs for women like Allen.

Now, she shares a message of hope.

``Truly, my destination today is to help another come out of what I was through," she said. ``That's why it's important to me to tell my story. As painful as it is at times, there's still some good that comes out of it today, and that really brings a lot of joy to my heart."

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