Britni Hiatt, FAU Student Struck By Former University President's Car, Claims To Have Been Diagnosed With Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
Britni Hiatt, the FAU student protest leader who was clipped by then-FAU President Mary Jane Saunders' 2011 Lexus GS as Saunders was leaving a meeting, claims that she has been diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder as a result of the accident.
Since the accident, Hiatt has been attending psychotherapeutic sessions. She is not taking any medication for PTSD, but claims to have been experiencing stress, depression, flashbacks, and has had difficulty sleeping.
Hiatt has expressed her trauma on her Facebook page:
Enduring the victim-blaming has been a large part of my experience after the hit and run. I should really stop myself from reading the comments. The violent language isn't new, but it's interesting that my diagnosis of PTSD has many people further enraged by me. So far I've been called a whiner and a bitch, told that I should shut up, and that I deserve to be hit by a car.
She also shared her feelings on having her photos taken by FAU police, and how she doesn't want any attention -- only an apology (although, one can argue that Facebook and other social media outlets like it is the epitome of getting attention):
Yes, I have PTSD. It's been very traumatic as a pedestrian injured in a high profile hit and run case. If you google my name, you see images of me lifting my shirt for FAU police to photograph my bruise. That's embarrassing to me.
I relive it every day. Today I went to the mall and someone I've never met identified me as the student President Saunders hit. It's painful to constantly talk about, but I want to see this out until the end because it's the responsible thing to do. I don't want attention (especially not harassment), I want action and justice and excellent leadership at FAU.
Still no apology, still hopeful.
Hiatt led the Stop Owlcatraz Coalition student protest group that was a pivotal force in having the university abandon their plan to have the FAU football stadium named after a privately owned prison company embroiled in human rights accusations.
It was during one of the protests where Hiatt was struck (some would say "clipped") by Saunders' car.
Hiatt had her injuries photographed by police, She was also taken to Jupiter Medical Center, where she was examined and diagnosed, as she told New Times at the time, with a "blunt injury" the "size of an orange."
According to Hiatt, her medical expenses are around $500, and her attorneys sent a letter to Saunders' insurance company asking for a reimbursement of medical expenses.
Before Saunders resigned as university president, faculty members had sent her emails asking her to apologize to Hiatt.
Almost two months removed from the incident, Hiatt has since graduated with a Bachelor's degree in women's studies, has been accepted to FAU's graduate program, and offered a teacher's assistant position.