By Julia Urquizo
RIVERSIDE, CA – The trial of “Marine1” (his real name not used to protect the identity of the victim), accused of sexual penetration with a child under the age of 10 when the then-marine was serving at Camp Pendleton in 2010, wrapped up this week in Riverside County Superior Court with Marine1 stating he “cannot give a truthful answer.”
During Marine1’s testimony this week, he described his schedule at the Camp Pendleton base, where he said he provided artillery for units in need of assistance, and completed frequent training sessions outside of Camp Pendleton in 2010 when he was arrested.
Throughout Marine1’s testimony he denied any memory of the male victim and his parents coming over to his old apartment in Oceanside, CA. Yet, Marine1 testified that the male victim had stayed with him and his wife before but said he was never alone in a room with the victim.
Another witness brought in to testify was the stepfather of the underage male victim. Between 2010 to 2011, the stepfather recalled bringing his wife and the victim to visit Marine1’s Oceanside residence.
Although the witness contradicted the Marine1’s testimony, the stepfather also testified to never letting the defendant watch the victim alone.
Marine1 was called to testify again to discuss a forensic interview that took place in 2016.
He claimed at the time of his interview that his memory was bad and it still is bad now in 2021. Marine1 acknowledged that during the interview he had said he drank like an alcoholic with his friends over the weekends while he was a Marine.
When the defendant was asked by the prosecution how he could be so sure now that he did not molest the victim, he answered that all of the transcripts and evidence shown to him allowed him to make the confident conclusion that no sexual abuse or molestation occurred.
The defendant was told to write an apology letter to the victim in the interview. The prosecution pulled a line from the letter the defendant wrote that stated, “I am the person that did this to you, and if this is true then I am deeply sorry.”
He explained that he was only trying to comfort the victim and make the victim’s voice feel heard by not denying the allegations.
The defendant acknowledged in court that he had said during the forensic interview that it was possible he committed the crime.
When asked why he stated in his apology letter that, if he was the one that molested the victim there was nothing he could do to fix it, Marine1 answered, “I have no definitive memory of it ever happening because of my memory issues.”