crimesider

Jurors hear testimony in trial of Oklahoma cop accused of sexually assaulting women

Daniel Holtzclaw

CBS affiliate KWTV

OKLAHOMA CITY -- Jurors in the case of an Oklahoma City cop charged with sexual assault against 12 women and one 17-year-old girl heard testimony this week from a woman who said the officer forced her to give him oral sex during a traffic stop, reports CBS affiliate KWTV.

Daniel Holtzclaw faces 36 counts of rape, sexual battery and other charges that carry a possible sentence of life in prison.

On Tuesday, Prosecutor Gayland Gieger described each alleged attack in detail, accusing Holtzclaw of detaining several of the women and the 17-year-old. Several women have accused Holtzclaw of forcing them to have sexual intercourse or perform oral sex.

Gieger told jurors to expect that many of the women would have criminal records or drug addictions. Holtzclaw's attorney, Scott Adams, has signaled in previous court hearings that he will question the credibility of the accusers based on their backgrounds.

The Oklahoman reports that on Thursday, jurors watched an hour and 20 minutes of a video of Holtzclaw being interrogated by a sex crimes detective.

"She's making some sexual allegations," the detective said, according to the newspaper's account of the video.

"What did she say?" Holtzclaw asked.

"She is saying you made her lift up her shirt and expose her breasts," the detective said.

"I didn't see her breasts," Holtzclaw answered.

"Do you recall putting your penis in her mouth?" the detective asked.

"I don't ... That's not me." He said. "I don't want this reputation. I'm a good officer ... I don't want this to fall on my rep."

Holtzclaw was arrested in August 2014, two months after a woman in her 50s alerted police that an officer had assaulted her as she drove home from a friend's place after a night of playing dominoes.

Sex-crimes detectives have testified they identified and interviewed women Holtzclaw had searched or been in contact with during his 4 p.m. to 2 a.m. shift. They used GPS records from his patrol car to place him at the scene of the alleged incidents.

Eventually, 13 people accused Holtzclaw of misconduct.

The 17-year-old alleged victim testified last year that Holtzclaw groped her outside her house, ostensibly to search for drugs, then pulled down her shorts and raped her.

Another woman previously testified that Holtzclaw drove her to an abandoned, trash-filled stretch of an impoverished Oklahoma City neighborhood in the shadow of the state Capitol. There, in a place locals call "Dead Man's Curve," the woman said Holtzclaw told her she could either submit to oral sex and intercourse, or go to jail.

Prosecutor Gayland Gieger accused Holtzclaw of becoming "more bold, more brazen and more violent" in the months leading up to the first accusation.

Defense attorney Adams said Holtzclaw wouldn't contest that he came into contact with the women or even arrested some of them, only that he exploited them.

He said the woman whose report sparked the investigation had smoked marijuana and used pain medication just before her encounter with the officer. In brief testimony Tuesday, the woman admitted to taking a hit of marijuana, but said she wasn't high when Holtzclaw pulled her over.

With the broad-shouldered former college football star sitting behind him, Adams described Holtzclaw's transition into law enforcement after a failed attempt to play in the NFL.

He called Holtzclaw a young, vigilant officer who cared about meeting people in the community and unfairly "turned out to be the villain."

"He was proud of what he did," Adams said. "He was proud to wear the badge."