Disabled NJ rape victim says passers-by ignored her and police doubted her claims

By Travis Gettys
Tuesday, March 25, 2014 10:07 EDT
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Fear of woman victim of domestic violence and abuse Shutterstock
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A New Jersey woman who has multiple sclerosis said passers-by ignored her pleas for help and police accused her of being a prostitute after she was knocked out by strangers and beaten and raped at an abandoned house.

The woman, who asked to be identified only as Kris, said she fell asleep Dec. 5 on a bus and wound up lost in downtown Trenton.

She told WNBC that she got off the bus and tried to find her route home to Hamilton, but a man began following her before everything went black.

The woman awoke to find herself lying on a plastic-coated mattress in a trash-strewn abandoned house, where two men repeatedly beat and sexually assaulted her.

After the men eventually fled, Kris stumbled out of the house bleeding and her broken jaw hanging inside her skin.

“Three or four people I first saw, and they wouldn’t give me the time of day,” Kris said. “And then I saw four people across the street and … they told me to go away.”

Kris said she limped for more than a mile to Frank’s Pizzeria, where owner Frank Colella said she stumbled in “shaking, crying, [and] bleeding.”

Employees called 911, and Kris was taken to a hospital in Hamilton, where a sexual assault nurse performed a rape exam and a detective collected preliminary information.

But the Medicaid patient was discharged the following day and told to see an oral surgeon and underwent multiple surgeries to repair her jaw.

Kris’ mother was furious that she was sent home so soon, and the hospital is conducting an investigation of the case.

The first formal police interview took place Dec. 23, and Kris said a Trenton detective and Mercer County prosecutor asked her if she was a prostitute or drug addict because of the location she’d gotten off the bus.

She told them she’d been prescribed a medical pain patch due to a spinal injury suffered from an MS-related seizure, and her doctor confirmed to WNBC that he had prescribed the Fentanyl narcotics patch.
Kris has no criminal history of drug abuse or prostitution, just a shoplifting case where charges were later dismissed.

She said detectives were hostile and treated her case like it was “a big joke and a waste of time.”

“When he asked his partner if there was one question they would like to ask, the one and only question he could come up with, out of everything in the book, was: ‘Did you voluntarily pull down the man’s pants before he raped you?’” said Kris.

Trenton police denied mistreating the woman and her family, and prosecutors said detectives waited until Kris left the hospital Jan. 9 due to her recovery from multiple surgeries and because the family had turned them away.

But Kris and her mother disputed that, pointing out that detectives had visited her Dec. 23 at the hospital.

The rape kit was sent out for testing on Jan. 2, and semen and pubic hairs were discovered but DNA test results have not yet been completed.

Watch this video report posted online by WNBC-TV:

[Image: Fear of woman victim of domestic violence and abuse via Shutterstock]

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