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Man mounts criminal defense over kidnapping, abuse accusations

A California man who is accused of kidnapping a teenage girl and holding her for a decade has pleaded not guilty to charges of rape, lewd acts on a child and kidnapping. The defendant, age 41, allegedly drugged and took the girl. He was dating her mother at the time of the alleged offense. The man's criminal defense attorney tells news outlets that the victim's claims of sexual and physical abuse are outright lies.

The woman, age 25, reportedly went to a police station about two blocks from her apartment, accusing the man of domestic violence. That woman was then found to have an open missing person report that had been filed by her mother. Neighbors said that the couple seemed to be happy and loving; they showed up to support the defendant at his plea hearing. They said that the woman seemed to be in love with the man, whom she had married. They had a child together, and the woman seemed thrilled to have a baby.

Attorneys for the defense say that there is no physical evidence showing that the victim suffered sexual, mental or physical abuse. They say the criminal charges are unfounded, and the man should be cleared of all charges. However, prosecutors say that the couple's recent behavior has no relation to how the man may have treated the woman while she was still a minor.

Such sex crimes cases can have long-term consequences for defendants who are accused of committing violations. However, physical evidence may be required to actually prove that the problems occurred. In such cases of alleged long-term abuse, these charges can sometimes be difficult to substantiate.

Source:  The News Tribune, "Man accused of 10-year abduction pleads not guilty" Gillian Flaccus, Associated Press, Jun. 09, 2014

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