Stun-gun Rape Suspect Denies Using Any Force

December 16, 1990|By Alan J. Craver | Alan J. Craver,Staff writer

A Baltimore County woman told a Harford Circuit Court jury last week that three men raped her in the back of a white Lincoln limousine in March after striking her with an electric "stun gun."

But Robert W. Ambrose, 23, of Joppatowne, on trial for raping the woman, told a different story. While being questioned by defense attorney Michele A. Nowak, Ambrose said the woman agreed to have sex with them in exchange for money to buy cocaine.

The 25-year-old Essex woman testified Wednesday that she tried to fight the men, but they repeatedly zapped her with the stun gun during the March 29 attack.

"I was screaming and kicking and smacking," said the woman as she fought back tears. "And then they got out a stun gun."

The woman's two-hour testimony came during the trial of Ambrose, the second of three men charged with the attack. The first defendant, Andre S.

Whims of Baltimore County, was acquitted after a September jury trial. The third defendant, Michael A. Bruno of Baltimore County, is scheduled for trial Jan. 25.

Ambrose is charged with 14 counts, including two counts each of first-degree rape and first-degree sex offense. If convicted, he faces a possible life sentence for the first-degree rape charges.

Under questioning by Assistant State's Attorney Mark W. Nelson, the woman told the jury that she met Ambrose, Whims and Bruno through two friends at a Baltimore City show bar, where she had performed as a dancer that night.

When the bar closed, the woman testified she agreed to go for a ride in the limousine with the men and her friends. The group drove to two Essex apartment complexes to get cocaine for the three men, she said.

The woman said her two friends left the group at one of the apartments and she stayed with Ambrose, Whims and Bruno. After driving for about 20 minutes, the woman said the men stopped the limousine on a deserted road and then attacked her.

Ambrose told the jury during testimony Friday that the woman suggested that they get cocaine, and then gave directions to the apartment complexes.

The men put their money together and gave the woman about $150 to buy drugs, Ambrose said. He said he didn't have any money to contribute.

"They were intending to have sex with her," Ambrose said. "She really didn't want the money; she wanted cocaine."

However, the woman did not buy any drugs and never returned the money to the men, Ambrose said.

Ambrose testified that the woman did not fight him and his friends when they started having sex with her. He added that no one held her down or threatened her.

After having sex, Ambrose said Bruno and the woman had an argument. During the argument, Bruno struck her with the stun gun twice on the leg, Ambrose said.

Ambrose added that he used the stun gun on his leg and arm earlier in the night. "It didn't hurt," he testified. "It was amusing, I guess."

Also during the trial, defense witness Steven Pierson, of Fallston, testified that he was with Whims, Bruno and Ambrose and also had sex with the woman.

"The girl said she wanted to have sex with us," said Pierson, who also testified during Whims' trial. "We gave her money. Nobody forced her."

Pierson, who has not been charged, was not mentioned in the woman's testimony. He said he did not come forward with his story before the September proceedings because he did not think any one would have believed him.

The trial is expected to continue tomorrow before Judge Cypert O.

Whitfill and a jury of eight men and four women.

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