#StandForSophie is trending on Twitter today in solidarity with nine year old Sophie Long. Sophie is being sexually assaulted by her mother’s boyfriend as her biological father fights in an ongoing court case for custody.
In the viral video (see above) that is circulating the internet, young Sophie Long from Frisco, Texas is seen pleading to different family members not to go back with her mother, Kelly Long. The 17 minute video compilation of two different interactions between Sophie and family members was taken by Michael Long, Sophie’s father, as directed by his lawyers. The video is assumed to be used as evidence to the court in his fight for custody. The footage depicts different clips of an aggravated, distressed and scared Sophie, explaining multiple times why she does not want to be with her mom. Not even a minute into the video, the first interaction shows Sophie running away and crying, expressing her absolute disdain from going back to her mother where she is being sexually abused.
The second, longer interaction takes place in Mr. Long’s car. Sophie fights with all of her might to not be taken out of the car and into the care of her mother and maternal grandmother. She hits, kicks, screams, cries. She does just about everything to not be taken out of the car as her mother and grandmother try to force her out. Sophie’s grandmother asks why she doesn’t want to come with them. Sophie states how “if it isn’t Mr. Jake” then it will be, “another boy she [her mom] brings back.” She is referring to how she is being touched by Mr. Jake, aka Jacob Bellington aka her mother’s boyfriend.
In the arguably most shared clip or audio, Sophie is heard pleading to her maternal grandmother about what is going on in her home. She starts off by explaining that her mother makes her feel bad about herself. Then Sophie graphically explains, as graphically as a nine year old can comprehend, how her mother’s boyfriend, “Mr. Jake,” touches her inappropriately. She ends by explaining the cycle of abuse, unbeknownst to the nine year old, and how her mother watches “Mr. Jake’s” touching, and as a result, causes her mother to act out on her and feel bad about herself. Her grandmother DISMISSES the girl’s pleas, saying that she “couldn’t have gotten the lead role in the play or done gymnastics if she felt that bad about herself.”
There is another viral video showing Sophie, again distraught, fighting with Child Protective Services.
— Tay🧚♂️💕 (@bxbygxrltxy) August 31, 2020
While these videos focus on just Sophie, some tweets have mentioned that Sophie has brothers who are also being abused.
Hi, so Sophie and her brothers are going through sexual abuse and verbal abuse by her so called "mother" and her boyfriend, sign this petition to have their dad get custody of them so this abuse can stop, please please sign this and share. #StandForSophie https://t.co/T7C9cqaHcl
— Diane|BLM (@dianemartin_) August 31, 2020
Upon the videos being released, it was exposed that Jacob Wellington, the boyfriend being accused, is a part of the Frisco police force. Theories believe that is why the police and court are still siding with Ms. Long.
9 year old Sophie Long is being forced by CPS to go with her mother who’s boyfriend is sexually abusing her his name is JACOB WAYNE BELLINGTON and he’s a police officer in Frisco Texas. Thats why they are siding with the him and the mother. #standforsophie FIX THE SYSTEM! pic.twitter.com/N6QE4Rrnok
— Tay🧚♂️💕 (@bxbygxrltxy) August 31, 2020
The video, along with the exposed fact that Wellington is potentially being protected by his police job, has enraged so many people that Twitter has created a hashtag for Sophie, #StandForSophie.
— Carmine Sabia (@CarmineSabia) August 31, 2020
Survivors of child sexual assault have been coming forward on Twitter sharing their own stories with the hashtag #StandForSophie.
Parents don’t believe kids when they say they are being touched even though they are the people who teach you to tell when you’re being touched. I was this little girl.
— ✨mother of squishmallows✨ (@indoor_wildling) August 31, 2020
Trigger warning // sexual abuse#StandForSophie
As a victim of sexual assault myself, this breaks my heart into a million pieces. She is NINE YEARS OLD. She deserves so much more. She deserves to feel & be SAFE. Please spread awareness so her dad can get full custody. https://t.co/yFFyeRjVFg
— Kat Groom (@Katlyn_Marie06) August 31, 2020
The hashtag is being used not only as an act of solidarity for survivors of child sexual assault, but also as a call to action.
TW// sexual assault , abuse
Sophie Long is a nine year old who is being sexually assaulted by her mother’s boyfriend. Her father is trying to get her back in custody but the courts aren’t listening.
USE YOUR VOICE. #StandForSophie
GoFundMe link in replies. pic.twitter.com/7FjjDUo0qf
— 𝘓𝘦𝘯𝘯𝘪 ⁷𝐈𝐍生📼 (@syzygyfilter) August 31, 2020
— Bree💕 (@breesdead6) August 31, 2020
The trending hashtag has gotten the attention of the Frisco police, who came online to comment publicly. Well, kind of.
— Frisco Police (@FriscoPD) August 29, 2020
And apparently there has also been a “gag order” put out by the court, meaning that Mr. Long can not talk about the case publically.
— Timeless_Leaf64 (@LeafTimeless) August 31, 2020
How People Are Helping Sophie Beyond The Hashtag
Besides the hashtag on Twitter, people are showing their support in multiple ways. A GoFundMe was started to help Sophie’s father’s fight for custody. The funds are going to his legal fees to help rescue his daughter. Since being created on August 21st, the fundraiser has gone viral and has exceeded its’ goal of $25,000 and has raised over $80,000.
Sophie’s father created a Facebook group called “Stand with Sophie” with the intention of spreading awareness of Sophie’s specific case, but has turned into also spreading awareness of child sexual assault in general. The page has 56.3 thousand members from all across the world. Many of them have been writing in their own personal survival stories of child sexual assault.
There is also a Save Sophie petition that those wishing to help Sophie are able to sign. The petition’s goal is to get the attention of Governor Abbot in order to put pressure on the case.
This is truly an enraging and heartbreaking story. We are thinking of Sophie and hope she gets the justice she deserves.