An Annapolis man has been charged with repeatedly raping his stepdaughter for nearly a decade, since she was 7 years old, city police said yesterday.
The man is also accused of sexually abusing one of the girl's friends from 1998 until the girl moved away in 2000.
He was ordered held without bail yesterday on two counts each of rape, first- and second-degree sex offense and perverted practice; and one count each of incest and child abuse by a parent.
The man's sister, Phyllis King, told District Judge Megan B. Johnson that he was a "good man" who worked hard to support his family. "I know these accusations, and they're false," she said.
His wife, who told police of the suspected abuse last month, said the girls corroborated the charges.
"The things that happened to [my daughter] are unthinkable for a mother," she said.
The Sun is not identifying the suspect or the mother to protect the girls' identities.
Charging documents say the suspect met his wife in March 1998 and moved in with her at an apartment that fall. The assaults began that year and involved the stepdaughter and her friend, who was 10, the documents say.
The daughter, now 16, remembered being asked to watch through a window for family members while her stepfather raped her friend and that the girls were forced to perform a sex act on him simultaneously, according to the records.
The stepdaughter and the friend told police that the assaults were so frequent that "it became normal." As she grew older, the stepdaughter told police, her stepfather gave her gifts and money to keep her quiet.
The last time she was molested, she said, was Jan. 21. On Feb. 6, the mother filed for a protective order to keep the man away from her, her daughter and three other children, ages 7 to 18.
Officer Hal Dalton, a spokesman for the Annapolis police, said the abuse came to light when the friend told her mother, who alerted the suspect's wife.
The man could be sentenced to life in prison if convicted of the rape charges.