When Adam Reid, a 17-year-old hairdressor, was found guilty of sexual abuse in May 2017, he was in the midst of a national crisis.
It was a week after his sister, Rachel, had gone missing.
He had been arrested and charged with sexual assault, and a jury had acquitted him.
On Wednesday, in an emotional and defiant statement, Reid spoke about his life and career, how he felt like a monster for being accused and the pain he still feels over the ordeal.
“I’m a human being and a human is a monster,” he said.
“That’s the bottom line.
And I’m sorry I did something that I’m not proud of, and I’m trying to get myself in the right place to get through this and hopefully get through it.”
Reid was among the many high schoolers at the time who took part in the anti-bullying campaign called #NoBullying.
He also went on to receive a $10,000 scholarship to attend a high school where he had an athletic scholarship.
After the verdict, he posted a series of Instagram posts that showed he had moved on from the experience.
“My heart breaks for the families that have to go through this, especially with the bullying that took place, the hurt, the humiliation and the fear that comes with this,” he wrote in one of them.
“It’s really hard on me.
I know I am a monster.
I’ve been taught to think of myself as a monster, and that’s just not who I am.
I’m a person with flaws and flaws and I’ve always been a person that’s never been ashamed of who I was.
I was taught that I was a monster.”
He also wrote, “I am a human.
I have flaws and a lot of emotions that make me feel bad.
I don’t like to talk about it, but it’s hard for me to talk to people about it.
I need to be strong and I need someone to talk with, someone that I can trust.
I want to know that people know who I really am.”
He continued: “I can’t tell people I’m just a human and I want them to love me.”
At his sentencing, Judge Richard Gough told him: “We are dealing with a young man who was convicted of two counts of sexual assault and two counts involving the alleged victim of his sister.”
But Reid said the judge had told him that it was a mistake for the jury to hear all the evidence.
“He had no idea,” Reid told the court, “that the evidence that I presented and the statements I made were not going to be sufficient to convict me.
He should have known.”
After Reid’s conviction, the NSW Department of Education launched an investigation into his case, and it eventually led to the prosecution of his former high school coach.
He was also stripped of his athletic scholarship and banned from using social media until he was 18.
Reid was not allowed to speak to the media.
“The only person who I can speak to is my attorney, and he’s not willing to talk,” Reid said.
Reid has since started a new career as a hairstylist, earning a living as a hairdler and hairdresseshop owner in Brisbane.
“You can’t have people on the internet telling you who you are and how you are, so I try to take the time to talk more to my family and tell them everything that’s going on,” he told BuzzFeed News.
He said he is currently studying a Masters in Business Administration.
“What I really want is to work for myself and not to have to work at a salon,” he added.
“To be honest, the only reason I’m here is to educate people.
And to do that, I need support.”
Adam Reid has been a haberdasher for nearly six years.
He is currently on a master’s degree in business administration, and his work includes hairdryers, hairstylists, and tailors.
“Everyone knows who Adam is, and the one thing that I know that everyone can agree on is he’s a good guy and he cares about his community,” Rachel Reid said of her brother.
“There is a huge stigma attached to being a hauberdasher, but Adam knows it is not what he wants to be known for.
He just wants to make money, so that’s the one part of his life that he wants everyone to know.”
Adam’s sister Rachel is currently pursuing her PhD in economics at the University of Queensland.
She is also a student at the Queensland University of Technology.
Rachel’s father, John, has not spoken publicly about the incident.
But he told the ABC’s 7.30 program that he was proud of his son and that he wanted the community to