We must begin this story by expressing that the details within will be disturbing to some. Oluwatoyin Salau, a young activist who was a frontline voice in support of the Black Lives Matter movement, was reportedly found dead after tweeting about a sexual assault encounter then going missing in Florida.
Salau, 19, wrote in detail about an assault that occurred on June 6 after accepting a ride from a Black man in the city of Tallahassee. Salau, who was staying in a nearby church that housed much of her personal belongings after expressing she was staying at a place with “unjust living conditions.”
“Anyways I was molested in Tallahassee, Florida by a black man this morning at 5:30 on Richview and Park Ave. The man offered to give me a ride to find someplace to sleep and recollect my belongings from a church I refuged to a couple days back to escape unjust living conditions,” Salut wrote.
She continued with, “He came disguised as a man of God and ended up picking me up from nearby Saxon Street. I entered his truck only because I carry anything to defend myself not even a phone (which is currently at the church) and I have poor vision. I trusted the holy spirit to keep me safe.”
In an attempt to defuse the situation, Salau told the man about how a man sexually assaulted her back in March in an attempt to receive some form of empathy from the man. After detailing the assault, Salau wrote that she made her escape back to the church with her belongings.
On Sunday (June 14), the Tallahassee Police Department announced that it was investigating a double homicide but did not name the victims. Via social media, two individuals claim that the family confirmed that Salau has indeed died but a formal statement from the authorities has yet to surface as of this morning (June 15).
One of the most upsetting aspects of this incident is the passion that Salau exhibited in the defense of Black men who have been slain by police, yet that did not translate into courtesy and protection for her well-being. That much has been noted by many on Twitter who say that Salau, also known as “Toyin,” fought for the very men that she was eventually harmed by.
Salau was defiant and committed to the fight to the end, writing, “The same n*ggas i’m risking my life for are the same niggas who are convinced they are stealing away my “innocence” or jewel not knowing that I am standing on a rock. Therefore I can never be broken or robbed.”
A relief GoFundMe campaign for Salau was launched and will now be used to help support the family with Salau’s brother serving as a beneficiary of the fund.
May Oluwatoyin Salau rest powerfully in peace.