Woman testifies that Maryland trooper fondled her after DUI arrest
Wednesday, April 14, 2010
In a trial taking shape as a she said/he said scenario, a woman testified Tuesday that a former Maryland state trooper fondled her repeatedly after she had been arrested and handcuffed on a drunken-driving charge.
"I was terrified. I was violated," said the woman, 28, recalling the night of July, 18, 2008, after she was pulled over on Interstate 270 in Montgomery County and taken to a Maryland State Police station by Trooper Marlon Iglesias, 43.
Prosecutors do not have much to go on besides the victim's word, based on opening statements Tuesday. Assistant State's Attorney Debbie Feinstein signaled that she will call the witness's friends and that they will testify that the woman had told them to varying degrees about the alleged fondling.
During cross-examination Tuesday, defense attorney Andrew Jezic got the woman to admit that she had lied to her attorneys in previous court cases.
"Will you stop telling lies from this point on?" he asked at one point.
Later, he was able to show that the witness did not recall correctly which door she used to leave police station.
"You're not positive about a lot of things, correct?" Jezic asked.
"Correct. It was almost two years ago," she answered.
Jezic said in his opening statement that the fondling never happened and that his client is innocent. Iglesias's wife of 21 years sat in the front row of the courtroom and could be seen holding Iglesias's hand in the hall during breaks.
In earlier testimony, under questioning from Feinstein, the witness came across as direct and deeply pained by what she said had happened. She said she did not initially report the incident to police because she "wanted to forget it happened."
She said it was not until she was arrested in connection with a different matter, in May 2009, that she broke down and told police what had happened.
She testified that Iglesias, who at times shook his head during her testimony, fondled or inappropriately touched her four times. As he was letting her go from the station, she said, he also grabbed her and kissed her.
"What did that feel like?" Feinstein asked her.
"Gross," she said.