Hereinafter - drawings by Ekaterina Martynova. She made them while she was held captive by the "Skopinsky maniac."
On September 30, 2000, residents of Ryazan, 14-year-old Ekaterina Martynova and 17-year-old Elena Samokhina, went to a disco and disappeared. On the way home, the girls were offered a ride by 50-year-old Viktor Mokhov. He treated his friends with alcohol, in which sleeping pills were mixed, and took them to the neighboring city of Skopin. For the next three years and seven months, he kept them in an underground bunker where the girls were sexually abused. Elena got pregnant three times and gave birth from a maniac. Friends saved only by a miracle. Ekaterina Martynova told RT how their life turned out, what fears remained after being underground and why Mokhov wrote to her from prison.
Almost 20 years ago, on September 30, 2000, two friends - Katya Martynova and Lena Samokhina - were returning home after a disco. Viktor Mokhov, along with his accomplice Elena Badukina, offered to give them a ride and drink along the way. Sleeping pills were mixed in with alcohol. When the girls disconnected, the criminals took them to the city of Skopin. At Mokhov’s summer cottage there was a garage, under which he had previously built a bunker specifically in order to hide his captives in it.
It was there, at a depth of six meters, the maniac kept the girls for three years and seven months, only occasionally allowing them to go out into the fresh air. Mokhov’s elderly mother, who lived with him in the same house, claimed that she didn’t suspect anything when she saw the girls walking around the site: she considered them son’s acquaintances.
All this time, Mokhov raped the girls. The eldest, Lena, was pregnant three times from him. Kate had to take birth twice in the bunker - according to the textbook on obstetrics and gynecology. The third child was already born dead.
Captives were saved by a lucky chance. Mokhov decided to introduce Katya to the girl who was renting a room from him, introducing her as her niece. The friends wrote a note where they told about themselves and asked the girl to take her to the police. Katya managed to throw a note to the tenant. Soon they were found and released.
Viktor Mokhov was sentenced to 17 years in prison. He has less than a year left to sit. Mokhov’s accomplice Elena Badukina, who helped abduct the girls, received 5.5 years in prison and has already served her sentence. She does not communicate with reporters.
How did the life of the former captives, what fears remained after living underground and why Mokhov wrote to her from prison, Ekaterina Martynova told RT.
“17 years is not enough time”
What do you feel about the imminent release of Mokhov?
I was at the announcement of the verdict, then it seemed to me that 17 years is a whole life. Now I understand that this period is not enough. Less than a year is left before his release. I know that it’s a sin to wish a person death, but I really don’t want him to go free.
I strongly doubt that Mokhov during this time repented or even simply considers himself guilty. At the trial, he was very surprised that he was given so much, they say, he didn’t kill anyone. He counted on serving five years and all.
He contacted me once during this time, in 2017. I wrote a letter after reading my book, where I talk about experiences. No flashes of conscience, no attempts to ask for forgiveness: he came upon me, saying that everything I wrote was a lie, and when he comes out, he will tell everyone how everything really happened. I tore that letter and threw it away.
“It is impossible to imagine what you survived during the confinement.” How did you manage to return to normal?
My mom and sister helped me a lot. They were always with me, supported. I visited a psychologist once, still a minor. After the session, she left the office and said that I would not return there again. For me, this was an outsider who asked what happened to me, and I always had to come back to this while the investigation was ongoing. In general, I decided that another woman who requires revelations from me is a bust, and refused. I was comfortable in a family environment, at home.
Sitting in the basement, I did not see people, and, of course, it was then difficult for me to simply communicate - with women and men. I always reminded myself in the bunker that Mokhov was not a man, but a monster, he was crazy, such units. And every day she remembered her father. The idea that most men are kind, good, understanding how dad helped to hold on.
Now, from the echoes of the experience, there were only unpleasant sensations when you close blackout curtains at night, turn off the light and you can’t see how the lights shine. All the time I leave a gap, I open the curtains. Absolute darkness annoys me. The same darkness was in the bunker.
"Lena was harder"
Do you communicate with Lena?
We don’t communicate, although I would like to know how she is doing.” We have a mutual friend who has just left for Australia, she told the latest news. As far as I know, Lena was married, then divorced, now lives with a guy, everything seems to be fine with them, it’s going to the wedding, but I don’t know if she plans to have children. According to a friend, Lena is happy, she looks great, she teaches English.
And what about those children whom she gave birth to from Mokhov?
Two boys were adopted, they must now be very large, one was born in 2001, the second - in 2002. Lena has never seen them. The third child, a girl, as far as I heard, was born after our release - I had to cause an artificial birth, and the baby was born dead.
I think that Lena was much harder than me. She did not understand what to do, such a psychological trauma remained for life. Imagine giving birth to three children from such a terrible person. But it's still your children, they are not to blame for anything. So I understand why Lena has closed and refuses to communicate with reporters.
Tell us about your life now.
I have two children: my son is seven years old, my daughter is five. I am a housewife, I have not gone to work since the first decree. Last summer I got married a third time. Three months ago, we moved from Ryazan to the suburbs, bought an apartment. There is a cottage in the village.
Now we are all sitting on self-isolation, children are playing, we collect puzzles, watch cartoons, and cook. In general, we lead an ordinary life.
How did you meet your husband?
My sister introduced us to Denis in October 2018. My relationship with my second husband was already ending, and Denis became a point in them. A week later, we began to live with him, I transported the children. Everything was as if in a fairy tale, and this fairy tale continues to this day.
We do not swear, there are no conflicts, not even minor disagreements. He loves me, treats my children very well. Before, I could not even believe that such happiness was possible, but now I think that maybe this is some kind of reward for all my suffering.
Do you read children safe behavior in the city, explain that you can not talk with strangers?
Of course! I forbid them to talk to strangers, explain: "If someone comes up to you, go home without looking back." The children understand everything, especially the son, he is so serious in character.
I fear for their safety not so much because of exactly what happened to me, but because we basically live in a terrible time. Children do not know about my story. Probably, sooner or later this will happen, but I would probably not want this.
"I became a fellow traveler"
How did you get the idea to write a book?
When I was sitting in the bunker, I wrote poetry. I still keep these notebooks, quietly retyping them into a computer. Plus I really like reading. At the age of 19 or 20 I had a difficult time: all the memories were alive, and I reacted sharply to everything related to my story. And it was important for me to tell how everything was really. Not as shown on TV, wrote in articles and on the Internet. Some Lena and I accused us of staying there voluntarily, taking the side of Mokhov ...
In general, there were several attempts to write a book, in the end everything worked out. Publishers refused my publication, so I just posted the book on an online platform. It is still sold there, however, I get from this penny.
Now I have written the second book. Two years ago I gave an interview where I mentioned the first book, that it was published, but did not receive much popularity. This was read by journalist Rustem Safronov, he lives in America. Rustem found me on VKontakte and through friends in November 2018 introduced me to the Danish writer Karston Graf.
Karston is called a "taboo writer." He raises problems that are not customary to talk about. His previous book was about incest: about a woman who was raped by her father in childhood. He convinced me that my story should be presented more fully, and indeed, it turned out to be more professional. He went to Skopin, to that house. I even talked with Mokhov on a social network, but he seems to be scared and blocked him.
My second book is ready, it is in English, so far without a title. We are waiting for the pandemic to end, all publishing processes have stalled, although we have several proposals for printing at least tomorrow. But Carston believes that these are not sufficiently popular publishers and an insufficient advance for such material. He wants this book to become world-famous.
What feedback did you receive from the readers of your first book?
I was written by a lot of girls, women on social networks. Someone was raped, someone in the family is not all right. They asked for advice on how to survive this. I am not a psychologist, I do not consider myself entitled to give any recommendations, I simply supported them with a word.
They say that when a person is traveling on a train with a stranger, he can be told something frank and it will become easier on his soul, because you know that a fellow traveler will never see you again. It seemed to me that to some extent I acted for these girls in the role of a fellow traveler.
What would you recommend to a person who is experiencing a difficult situation?
You need to try to be strong, no matter what. Because the first one who can help in something is just you. And of course, you need to love your loved ones and take care of them. Because at a difficult moment, they will take care of you and give all their love.
In other news, Rick Owens Fall 2021 fashion show. On the subject of underthings, the pentagram briefs from the January men’s show reappeared here wrapped around evening clutches, the implication being that these alien females had handled the “unhinged male aggression” that those briefs signified.