Charges dropped in teen rape case
Prosecutors have dismissed charges against the second of two men accused of raping a 15-year-old girl and forcing her into prostitution.
District Judge Edwin Nacino granted the state's request to dismiss the charges against Martzes D. Junior, 24, pending investigation, but without prejudice, meaning the state can still seek an indictment against him.
Junior was charged Thursday with two counts of first-degree sexual assault, first-degree promotion of prostitution and first-degree kidnapping in the incident, which began Dec. 1.
Lane Takahashi, court-appointed attorney for Junior, said they do not object to the charges being dismissed.
Junior, who said he came to Hawaii to visit relatives and wants to stay and find work here, said the prospect of potential charges in the future doesn't bother him.
"I'm not worried; I'm innocent," he said. "The truth will prevail."
He said he doesn't know why the girl accused him of raping her and that he doesn't even know her. "I met a girl and the victim was her friend," he said.
Jason Smith, whom Junior said he met on the streets here, was indicted Thursday with six counts of sexual assault, kidnapping and promoting prostitution.
The girl told police that on Dec. 1, Smith had raped her, then had his friend, whom she identified as Junior, also rape her. She said the men told her she was their property and forced her to prostitute herself in downtown near the Pali Longs and to turn the money over to them.
Smith allegedly threatened to harm her and her family and displayed a stun gun. She escaped five days later.