MARTINEZ -- The trial for two men charged with participating in the gang rape of a 16-year-old girl on the Richmond High School campus continued Wednesday with testimony from the first responders and the airing of a 911 call that put an end to the 2½-hour attack.
"Hi, um, it's in Richmond High School," Richmond resident Margarita Vargas told a 911 dispatcher on Oct. 24, 2009. Vargas placed the call after her young brother-in-law told her that, while hanging out near campus, some boys told him there was girl he could go have sex with.
"Um, there's a girl that's like hecka drunk, and, and she's naked."
"We don't want to go back there because we're scared," Vargas told the dispatcher. "People have passed by there, have been seeing her, but nobody wants to call the cops, so we decided to call."
There was no specific testimony Thursday as to the defendants, 22-year-old Richmond resident Jose Montano and 20-year-old Pinole resident Marcelles Peter, who each face life in prison if convicted as charged in the attack in which a sophomore girl was beaten, robbed, raped and otherwise sexually abused after leaving a homecoming dance and drinking in a dark campus courtyard.
Two other men have been convicted of the gang rape through plea deals, another two are awaiting trial on lesser sexual assault charges, and others who participated have never been identified by police.
Richmond police officers Todd Kaiser and Gunnar Googins testified Thursday that they saw as many as seven young men run from their approaching patrol cars when they responded to Vargas' 911 call.
"They faced me, turned the opposite direction, and ran away," Googins said. "We saw a limp body under the table, but at that point we weren't really sure what it was."
The girl was found slumped over a picnic table support beam, mostly nude with her homecoming dress bunched up in a twisted mess about her waist. She was surrounded by vomit and covered with scrapes, bruises and debris. There was major swelling to her face and head, prompting authorities to summon a helicopter ambulance, a paramedic testified.
Kaiser said he alerted the victim's father, who had been on campus for about an hour searching for his daughter, that he believed she had been raped. The father started screaming and shaking a residential fence in his grasp.
Kaiser said the owner of the fence told the father, "Hey, if you need to rip that fence out of the ground, you do what you have to do."
Several officers testified about the capture of Richmond resident Manuel Ortega near the campus that night. Ortega, 22, took a plea deal last year in exchange for a 32-year prison sentence and is expected to take the witness stand sometime soon.
"I wasn't the only one, there was hell of people," Officer Jeff Whitson quoted a belligerent Ortega saying once he was in police custody.
According to Whitson, Ortega said, "She was so drunk, she didn't know what was going on."
Testimony continues Thursday.
Contact Malaika Fraley at 925-234-1684. Follow her at Twitter.com/malaikafraley.