The attorney of a man charged with raping his stepdaughter accused the alleged victim Tuesday of concocting the allegations to get out of military service.
David Moreno, 55, is on trial charged with two counts of aggravated sexual assault against his stepdaughter.
Moreno’s attorney, Travis Ware, insinuated multiple times that the woman, now 27, fabricated the story.
At one point Ware posited that “lots of women are using Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and sexual assault allegations to gain early military discharge.
“Sexual assault is kinda the ‘soup du jour,’ isn’t it?” he asked.
The woman came forward with the allegations against Moreno in 2007, after returning to the United States from a deployment to Afghanistan.
She testified that Moreno began sexually assaulting her around 1989 and continued until 1996.
She said she wanted to confront him to get closure.
“This is something that I no longer want weighing on my mind,” she told the jury.
She said the abuse was a nightly occurrence and that Moreno forced her to perform multiple sexual acts, beginning when she was 5 or 6 years old.
Ware accused her of making the allegations to build a case to get out of the military for fear of being redeployed to a combat zone — a claim she vehemently denied.
She was medically discharged a few months before her scheduled end of enlistment.
Despite more than an hour of pointed questioning, the woman maintained that her coming forward
was for her own closure.
“Me getting out of the military early has nothing to do with what David did to me when I was 6, 7, 8, 9, sir,” she said.
The last thing jurors heard Tuesday was a series of recorded
phone calls the woman made with Lubbock Police Det. Justin Martinez.
She called Moreno and implored him to explain to her why he assaulted her.
He did not know he was being recorded, but it was clear he was leery of the conversations being used against him.
He insisted that he was high and drunk most of the time when she was young and said he didn’t remember specifics.
Finally, he told her he wouldn’t apologize for “molesting” because that “sounds awful.”
Instead, Moreno referred to what she called molestation, sex abuse and rape as “stupid mistakes of my life.”
Testimony was scheduled to resume today in the 364th District Court with more recorded calls.
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