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Border Patrol agents on trial for lewd behavior at ‘Cirque Du Soleil’ show

By Arturo Garcia
Tuesday, February 5, 2013 11:06 EDT
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Border Patrol agents on trial for lewd behavior at 'Cirque Du Soleil' show
 
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Two U.S. Border Patrol agents are on trial for what prosecutors described as a night of drunken sexual acts in full view of other spectators at a ‘Cirque Du Soleil’ show in San Diego.

According to KFMB-TV, prosecutors alleged on Monday that witnesses saw agent Kallie Helwig’s head go down on her colleague Gerald Torello’s lap during the incident, which took place during a matinee performance last May, in “a rhythmic motion, with the head going up and down, up and down.”

The two agents, who were off-duty at the time, allegedly kissed and groped each other throughout the show after arriving late and drunk. One witness, Chai Wu, said that Torello gave a high-five at one point to a boy who witnessed the display.

Wu has also accused Helwig of attacking her after the show, leaving her with a swollen jaw and a black eye.

But U-T San Diego reported that, according to the agents’ attorneys, they acted in self-defense following a misunderstanding over their interactions that afternoon.

“She did have a stomach ache,” said Helwig’s attorney, Knut Johnson. “She didn’t feel great. She didn’t put her head on his lap, but she leaned over. And she watched every minute of that show.”

Torello’s attorney also denied allegations that he threatened to kill Wu, a psychiatrist for the U.S. Navy, after she told them to “get a room.”

“The most Gerald Torello ever told [the witnesses] was, ‘Shut up and mind your own business,” the attorney said.

Helwig and Torello have been removed from field duty but continue to serve with pay. They each face up to a year in jail if convicted.

Watch KFMB’s report on the opening statements in the agents’ trial, aired Monday, below.

Arturo Garcia
Arturo Garcia
Arturo R. García is the managing editor at Racialicious.com. He is based in San Diego, California and has written for both print and broadcast media, including contributions to GlobalComment.com, The Root and Comment Is Free. Follow him on Twitter at @ABoyNamedArt
 
 
 
 
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