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Stockton sexual assault survivor joins football team to triumph over her trauma

Katisa Marrujo joined the Nevada Storm this past season, nearly 2 years since her rape in Stockton. She says she's facing her trauma on the turf to help overcome it.

RENO, Nev. — Katisa Marrujo was raped in 2020, but her rapist was never caught. She's now turning that trauma into triumph as she finds new strength as a player for the Nevada Storm, a women's tackle football team.

It's been nearly two years since that dark day. Marrujo was raped inside her grandmother's home by an intruder. 

"When my attack happened, in that moment, he was in charge. He took control of that situation. He charged me," Marrujo said. 

Two years later, Marrujo says she is taking charge of her life, her goals and her healing. 

She joined the Nevada Storm women's tackle football team to build back her strength, both inside and out. 

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"Unfortunately, he knew how to bear his weight, and now, I'm working through those things. And it's quite an uplifting experience that I can move faster and be stronger than what I think I am," she said.

Marrujo decided to join after seeing the support from the other women on the team. She felt like it was the right decision for her to move to Reno and start this new chapter. 

"I'm currently on the line. I'm a guard and that requires tackling and that's a lot of contact with women who are face to-to face. My coaches see the immense progress that I'm making," Marrujo said. 

She says the contact in football is a parallel to her journey. She's facing her trauma head on to overcome it.

"My greatest regret pretty much was not having my foot forward and being more active in this investigation," Marrujo said. "I spiraled down, and I don't want that for other women. I want them to know they can take control of their life."

Sexual violence resources:

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