The Girl in The Box

2020-08-05 16:59:01 Written by Kerry Johnson

Note: The information about this case is taken from Quora's answer.

Question: What is your favorite case?

It’s really difficult to choose a favorite case but I do have one that has ALWAYS stayed with me ever since I read about it. It’s not a fascinating case and rather completely terrifying that someone could do this to another human being. It’s also known as the girl in the box case.


On May 19th, 1977, 20-year-old Colleen Stan was hitchhiking from her residence to a friend’s house to attend the friend's birthday celebration. Colleen had traveled this way many times and was cautious about who she accepted rides from. So when a normal-looking man and his spouse and their baby pulled over and gave her a ride, she jumped into their blue van without any difficulty. Not long after they had been driving once they came along a remote area, the man who was Cameron Hooker pulled the van off the highway into a region where they wouldn’t be seen. From there Cameron put a knife to Colleen’s throat and put a wooden lockbox around Colleen's skull. The lockbox was designed to prevent air, light, or sound in. From that time to the next seven years, Colleen was forced to be Cameron’s sex slave.

Over the seven years, Colleen spent most of that time closed in a box the couple kept under their bed. The lockbox was not even big enough for her to stand up straight in and there was very little air for her to breathe. She was raped and tortured repeatedly by Cameron who made Colleen sign an agreement that made her his slave for life. Cameron also convinced her that she was being followed by a large and powerful group called “the company” who if she at any time didn’t do what he needed or attempted to let anyone know what was happening then her family would be murdered. Since Cameron was pretty convinced that she would never try anything because of “the company” he allowed Colleen out to jog, job outside, and even look after his and his wife’s kids.

Watch a complete documentary about her.
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At one point she even got a job chambermaiding at a local hotel and the whole time despite being around acquaintances, other people, and even a phone, she not once attempted to escape.


The craziest thing about this case as well is that to stop the concern her family had from her disappearance, Cameron and Colleen made visits residence. She had even once been there by herself! Still, because she was so brainwashed and in fear of her family being hurt by “the company”, she never once said to them what was going on or reached out for support!!!!!!!


Janice Hooker, Cameron’s wife ultimately put her foot down and stopped the madness when Cameron said to her he wanted Colleen to also become his spouse! From the couple's first date until that turning point Janice admitted to Colleen that she too had been tortured and abused by Cameron. Janine also admitted to Colleen that Cameron was not part of some group named “the company” and that the agreement Colleen signed was not real. Colleen then got up, stepped out of the house to a phone booth, and phoned Cameron who was at work I think and said to him that she was leaving him. He answered by crying and begging her not to leave. Stan then caught a bus residence to her family. Colleen did not tell her family nor call the authority either to tell them about what she had just suffered. Instead, she kept in contact with Cameron and phoned him regularly for a month after she left. She said to the court later at the trial, the reason she did this was that she was allowing Cameron to improve himself, she also was doing this at Janine’s request.


It wasn’t until three months later after Colleen left that Janine eventually reported her husband to the police. She also admitted that Cameron had abducted, tortured, and murdered another young girl before Colleen in 1976. Janice in exchange for full protection testified against her husband who received a total of 104 years of prison.


Colleen Stan suffered chronic back and shoulder pain as a result of all those years closed in the box. After she returned home she accepted extensive therapy and went on to marry and have a daughter of her own. She also joined a group that focuses on encouraging abused women and she earned a degree in accounting. Both she and Janice Hooker changed their names and live in California but they do not communicate with one another.


I have always discovered this case so interesting because I just can’t think how she had so many chances to escape but she never did. Of course, I wasn’t in the circumstances, so I can’t say anything.

If you want a good read about the case, then read “The perfect victim: the true story of the girl in the box” by Christine McGuire and Carla Norton. It was a mind-blowing read about one true crime case I will never forget.

Source: Kerry Johnson's Answer