Watch: Christine Blasey Ford Says 'I Am Terrified' as She Describes Alleged Brett Kavanaugh Sexual Assault

Christine Blasey Ford was visibly distressed as she read her opening statement before the Senate Judiciary Committee, describing a sexual assault she alleged Brett Kavanaugh committed against her while she was in high school.

"I am here today not because I want to be. I am terrified," she said, with her voice breaking. "I am here because I believe it is my civic duty to tell you what happened to me while Brett Kavanaugh and I were in high school."

Ford, who had begun by saying she would need more caffeine, then went on to describe the alleged assault.

"I was pushed onto the bed and Brett got on top of me," she said. "He began running his hands over my body and grinding his hips into me. I yelled, hoping someone downstairs might hear me, and tried to get away from him, but his weight was heavy. Brett groped me and tried to take off my clothes. He had a hard time because he was so drunk, and because I was wearing a one-piece bathing suit under my clothes. I believed he was going to rape me."

"I am here not because I want to be. I am terrified."

Dr. Christine Blasey Ford is testifying in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee:

— The Washington Post (@washingtonpost) September 27, 2018

Ford, a professor in California, said what happened next has proved the most traumatic.

"I tried to yell for help," she said. "When I did, Brett put his hand over my mouth to stop me from screaming. This was what terrified me the most, and has had the most lasting impact on my life. It was hard for me to breathe, and I thought that Brett was accidentally going to kill me."

Ford said that Kavanaugh and Mark Judge, Kavanaugh's friend whom she said was present during the alleged assault, "were drunkenly laughing during the attack." She said that the two boys also laughed following the alleged attack.

After Ford delivered her opening remarks, prosecutor Rachel Mitchell, who was chosen by Republicans on the committee to ask questions on their behalf, began her questioning. Mitchell is expected to take the five minutes allotted to each of the 11 Republicans. Some members of the GOP on the committee have not ruled out asking their own questions, however.

Ford will also be questioned by the 10 Democrats on the committee, led by Dianne Feinstein, who first received a letter from Ford in July detailing the allegations.

Christine Blasey Ford hearing, Donald Trump Jr.
Christine Blasey Ford, the woman accusing Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh of sexually assaulting her at a party 36 years ago, testifies before the Senate Judiciary Committee in Washington, D.C., on September 27. SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images