Don’t think of me as a monster, says Spitzer’s call girl

By David Usborne in New York
Friday, 14 March 2008

She is just one among so many young people in New York, the unforgiving city they flee to from dead suburbs and dysfunctional families with dreams of one day making it big. For Ashley Dupre, future fame lay in making music. A shame, then, that it has come instead from making whoopee – with the wrong man.

For that unexpected turn of events, Ms Dupre is now asking for public sympathy. It is hardly her fault, she presumably reasons, that the call girl service she signed up with – how else to pay the rent? – hooked her up (so to speak) with a beak-nosed middle-aged man whose real name was Eliot Spitzer.

“This has been a very difficult time,” she says in an interview with The New York Times, the first to track down “Kristen”, the prostitute, who, according to legal filings, had the tryst with Mr Spitzer that ruined his career. Real name, Ashley Alexandria Dupre. “I just don’t want to be thought of as a monster.”

So much for discreet sex. Mr Spitzer’s dealings with Ms Dupre’s employers, the Emperor’s Club VIP, have now been spilt across all the world’s media, peppered with his own words caught on wiretaps. But the humiliation is not over. What more could happen? Well, the woman could come forward. Indeed, we may all soon know Ms Dupre considerably better than Mr Spitzer surely did when he met her in his room. That is partly thanks to the new world of social internet sites. If you caught her MySpace page (it had vanished last night) you’d have seen flattering photographs – Ashley on a yacht, Ashley clubbing – and a motto that might serve Spitzer more than her: “What destroys me strengthens me”.

And, almost grotesquely, we could all settle in our front rooms and listen to the voice of the woman who felled one of the most powerful leaders of the land. Until its disappearance last night, the site had been viewed half a million times. In truth, the song was not half bad. “I am all about my music and my music is all about me,” she said in her profile. “It flows from what I’ve been through.”

What also emerges is the portrait of a young woman that hardly syncs with the “high-priced” sophistication projected by the website (also since disappeared) of the Emperor’s Club. The profile speaks of a girl who flees her home – and “abuse” – at 17, dabbles with drugs and finally settles in Gotham.

Making ends meet is tough. She is worrying now, she tells the Times, about paying the rent of her ninth floor apartment in the Flatiron district after a boyfriend “walked out on me” when she found he had fathered two children. If she can’t make it, she may go back to her family in New Jersey to “relax” a little.

First there are legal matters to deal with. On Monday, she briefly appeared in court as a witness in the case of the four Emperor’s Club employees who were arrested at the end of last week.

What reception will she find if she returns home? Not as chilly as you might expect. Her mother, Carolyn Capalbo, far from voicing outrage at her daughter’s career choices, instead noted she was not sure that her daughter knew the true identify of Mr Spitzer when they met. More reason to feel sorry for her.

“She is a very bright girl who can handle someone like the governor,” Ms Capalbo said. “But she also is a 22-year-old not a 32-year-old or a 42-year-old and she obviously got involved in something much larger than her.”


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