MARTINEZ, Calif. —
The father of the Richmond High gang rape victim offered some gut-wrenching testimony Tuesday, describing the horrifying scene as he first saw his daughter following the brutal attack.
A news camera was allowed inside the courtroom for opening statements, but not for witness testimony.
The victim’s father was the first to take the stand in the unusual double-jury trial of two Richmond High gang rape suspects, 20-year-old Marcelles Peter and 22-year-old Jose Montano.
The father talked extensively about the scene the night in October of 2009 at Richmond High School and seeing his daughter as she was being wheeled from the scene after the horrible crime.
“[Her] face was distorted, ashen, gray, clammy. She appeared to me on death row. Hair was all messed up. Lots of vomit in her hair,” the father said. “[There was a] footprint on the side of her face.”
The father, identified as John Doe, described seeing his daughter in the aftermath of the attack as terrifying.
“It is a horror. It’s very scary to see what I did at that point,” he said.
Seeing his daughter as beat up as she was, he said he talked to her while she was being taken to the ambulance.
“I assured her that we loved her and to hold on,” the father said.
He also testified that on the night of the crime, someone called him with his daughter’s phone and told him that his daughter had performed well sexually.
The case centers around who did what in the gang rape of the girl after her homecoming dance at Richmond High.
The victim was raped repeatedly for hours by as many as 20 people. Tuesday’s opening statements were for Montano.
“The evidence will prove that Mr. Montano personally committed some of those acts. He personally raped Jane Doe,” said prosecutor John Cope. “And he’s guilty of doing those acts in concert with those other people who did those other acts.”
Montano’s attorney Jane Elliott admitted his client got on top of the victim, but said he did not commit rape.
“Now what Mr. Montano did in jumping down and jumping back up and then leaving, was that good behavior? Absolutely not,” said Elliott. “We don’t want our kids doing that. We don’t want anyone doing that.”
Elliot also questioned the credibility of the prosecution’s witnesses and said while Montano’s DNA was found on a condom wrapper and can of alcohol, his DNA was not found on the victim.
Peter’s attorney, Gordon Brown, also questioned DNA evidence against his client, saying wind and police walking through the area could have compromised the scene.
“I don’t think we will ever know all that happened,” Brown said in his opening statement Monday.
Montano and Peter were among six men charged in the crime. Two men are awaiting trial, and two others took plea deals.
Witness testimony continues Wednesday, with the victim is expected to take the stand sometime this week.