PLANO - Most of us heard the news Charlie Sheen dropped on the Today Show. Yeah, he's HIV-posititve. Diane Reeve can relate. She's opened up about her condition on television with Oprah and 20/20.
"I know personally the kind of courage that it takes to stand up in front of millions of people and tell them your HIV-positive," she said.
Reeve, a black belt in several styles of martial arts, couldn't defend herself against one man. "Looking for the last love of my life and found a man that was charming and handsome."
Philippe Padieu, a man she'd been dating for four years, never told Reeve he had AIDS. Then she found out she was infected with HIV. "I thought my life was over. My immune system had been damaged to the point that i was categorized as having AIDS."
She also found out he'd infected other women.
"We found at least 12, maybe 13. Six of us filed charges."
Philippe Padieu was convicted of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon in 2009 and sentenced to 45 years in a Texas prison.
Reeve is currently writing a book, Standing Strong, her inspiring story about a court case that made history.
"My goal is to increase awareness, to decrease stigma, and to provide hope for people," Reeve explained.
"Hopefully with educating people through the book and through public speaking. I can keep them from being conned and there's a lot of that going on."