Author Alice Sebold and Anthony Broadwater, the man wrongfully convicted of sexually assaulting her, spoke to the New Yorker about the case that landed Broadwater in prison for 16 years.

Rachel Aviv, a staff writer for the magazine, interviewed Sebold and Broadwater for the article. Both discussed how the trial for Sebold’s rape affected their lives.

Sebold was attacked in 1981 while a freshman at Syracuse University, and Broadwater was arrested and charged with the crime. Sebold didn’t identify Broadwater in a police lineup, but she later claimed in court that she recognized him as her attacker.

She wrote of the attack in her 1999 memoir, Lucky. In 2021, Broadwater’s conviction was overturned, and Sebold later apologized to him in a statement. The memoir’s publisher, Scribner, announced it would no longer distribute the book.

Sebold told Aviv that she wants to send a letter to Broadwater. She said that it’s difficult for her to revisit memories of the trial. “I can’t dive into it without losing a sense of who I even am,” she said. “My perceptions of other people, my trust in myself. That I can fuck up so badly and not even know it.”

Broadwater said, “I guess starting out with a letter would be pretty nice.” He said he wants to meet Sebold in person so they could discuss how the district attorney’s office “duped her and kept her blind.”

He said that he understands that it’s difficult for Sebold to revisit the case, but “I was part of it—whatever she’s recollecting, each day and moment, I experienced it, too. I don’t think I can judge her pain, but I know that for me it was war.”

Michael Schaub, a journalist and regular contributor to NPR, lives near Austin, Texas.