Plymouth District Attorney Timothy J. Cruz yesterday vowed to block any move to force a 3-year-old Pembroke girl to testify at a dangerousness hearing
for the man accused of raping her - and he called on state lawmakers to change the statute.
“I will not allow babies in my county to be brought to court. . . three or four days after a traumatic event just to give the defense a leg up,”
Cruz told the Herald.
Cruz’s office successfully petitioned Plymouth District Court Judge John Julian to quash subpoenas Joseph H. Gardner’s defense attorney had sent to the girl Gardner is accused of raping and her 8-year-old brother.
The 3-year-old, her brother and their mother were spending the night at Gardner’s apartment Friday when the boy allegedly saw Gardner take her into the bathroom
, according to court records.
There, as his own 4-year-old slept in another room, Gardner allegedly raped her, slammed her head against the counter three times and threatened to kill her father if she told anyone
what happened, records show.
The girl’s mother told police she heard her daughter crying that night but didn’t get up to check on her until about 11:30 a.m.
Saturday, when she awoke to find the child without a diaper. Police said they later discovered a diaper and a pair of boxer shorts in the trash at the rear of the apartment.
In the earlier case, Gardner allegedly broke into the bathroom of a distant relative and raped a 5-year-old girl while her 10-year-old cousin watched in horror