The woman who was allegedly kidnapped and raped in a three-day ordeal in 2019 took the stand for the first time Wednesday to testify against her alleged attacker.
The woman, whom NBC10 Boston is not naming because she is the alleged victim of a sexual assault, told a jury in Boston that she remembered waking up naked in an unfamiliar apartment after going out in Boston the night before.
"I tried to leave," the woman said, but her alleged attacker, Victor Pena, "wouldn't let me…he threatened to kill me."
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"I didn't want to die so I just let him," she continued. "He said he rescued me and saved me and I would've gotten frostbite if he hadn't saved me."
Pena, a 42-year-old from Charlestown, faces 10 charges of aggravated rape and one of kidnapping. The trial opened in Suffolk Superior Court Monday.
A companion of Pena's, Marlon Roldan, testified Tuesday about what happened when they saw the victim walking alone the night of Jan. 19, 2019, on Congress Street. Pena said hello to her, she said hi back, they started to talk, and she started walking with him. Roldan said the victim was visibly drunk and he told Pena to leave her alone.
"I told him let's keep going, leave her there, and he didn't listen. He continued going with her," Roldan said in court.
He testified that Pena was hugging her and eventually the two were kissing as they were walking toward State Street Station. Roldan left but Pena took the woman on the T, getting on the same train as Amy Simpson, who told the jury on Tuesday that the woman couldn't even stand up straight.
"Her eyes weren't really open, they were kind of fluttering a bit," Simpson recalled.
Prosecutors showed jurors video that appeared to show the victim falling down, with Pena picking her up and carrying her in the direction of the T. This was allegedly the beginning of a three-day search for that 23-year-old victim, who was last seen leaving a Faneuil Hall bar she had been at with her twin sister and friends.
While at Hennessy's Bar in Boston, the woman met Sean Handy. He testified Tuesday that they met on the dance floor, but the two were so intoxicated that they got kicked out of the bar. The two parted ways, and that's how the victim ended up walking the streets alone that night when she encountered Pena, who allegedly took her back to his Charlestown apartment, sexually assaulted her and held her captive for three days.
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A retired Boston Police Sergeant described the moment police found her in Pena's apartment after pinging her cell phone in the area.
“She was shaking, crying, had her arms clutched up to her face, she was disheveled, had a horrified look on her face," Ret. Boston Police Sgt. Det. Michael Talbot said.
Pena's family and his attorney have said he suffers from mental health issues and has the mental capacity of a 12-year-old, but he was declared competent to stand trial following a hearing last week. Pena can't be in the same room as the jury for his trial due to his behavioral issues.