Ex-governor Spitzer's call girl says she's "a normal girl."
This week, Ashley Dupré, the former call girl whose clientele included then-New York governor Eliot Spitzer, sat down with People for her first interview since the scandal. "Everyone knows me as 'that girl,' but I'm not just 'that girl,'" she says. "I have a lot of depth, a lot of layers. I am a normal girl." Enduring this scandal "has been really hard," says Dupré. "But I'm a survivor." Speaking out, she hopes, will help her "get on with my life."
The issue hits newsstands Friday, but here are some of the highlights:
• How she got her start: In 2004, she was approached by a man who asked if she'd considered modeling. When she discovered he worked for an escort agency, she wasn't turned off. "This wasn't any different than going on a date with someone you barely knew and hooking up with them," Dupré says. "The only difference is I can pay my rent."
• What she thought of being a call girl: At first, being a prostitute "was like, 'Wow, this is easy!' " Dupré says. "I didn't feel like it was a big deal. I knew what my purpose was, they knew what their purpose was - there weren't any games." Her clients were "intelligent, handsome, successful." But before long, the job began to scare her. "What if I got AIDS?," she wondered. "Got killed?"
• She didn't recognize Spitzer: She had no idea it was the governor she was meeting on Feb. 13, 2008 in D.C. "I mean, ask a lot of 22-year-olds," she says. "I was wrapped up in my family, my music. I knew the name, but the face . . . I'm not really a TV person."
• What happened that night: Dupré recalls that when she met Spitzer in D.C., he "was polite. Some guys, they want to have conversations and really get to know each other. With him, it clearly was not like that. It was more of a transaction. Strictly business." After that night, she says she never talked to him again. On her attorney's advice, she won't elaborate on that evening or say if Spitzer had been a client before.
• When she realized Spitzer's true identity: Dupré realized who her client was when she saw Spitzer on TV, admitting his failures and apologizing at a press conference. "It was surreal," Dupré says. "I felt like I was suffocating."
• How her homemaker mom reacted: "It was extremely painful for her," Dupré says, though "my mother wasn't angry. She was supportive."
• Dupre feels bad for Spitzer's wife Silda: "I try not to revisit that place too often, but when I think about his speech [on TV], I think of her face. Her eyes. The hurt." If she could speak to Silda now, Dupré says, she would tell her, "I'm sorry for your pain."
• What the future holds: "I'm 23 years old. I want to do music, to do fashion, to write books - there are so many things." Selling her body isn't among them. "No," she says firmly. "Never again."