Both Bray accusers take the stand in trial
'I thought I was going to die'
Both women accusing Thomas Bray of raping them took the stand Wednesday morning in the first full day of testimony. No cameras are allowed in the courtroom at the request of the alleged victims in this case.
While we will not name either alleged victim, their personal information was revealed for everyone to hear in court.
There are two accusers in this case. One is a 22-year-old ex-student of Bray's when he was an anatomy teacher at Central Oregon Community College.
She told the judge she had an on-and-off sexual relationship with Bray in February of 2011. During Wednesday's court session, Bray's attorney, Stephen Houze ripped into text messages between her and his client during that time.
Bray's attorney said the texts show not only was the sex consensual, but the woman wanted "rough sex" and to act out sexual fantasies with Bray. The woman was the second to come forward alleging Bray had raped her.
Bray's other accuser is a 25-year-old Bend woman who met him on the online dating site Match.com. She testified she was looking for husband material when Bray messaged her, 'Hi.'
She said Bray described himself in his online profile as "tall, handsome, refined and a gentleman."
The woman said after a few messages back and forth, she agreed to meet him for a drink at Tart, a french bistro in downtown Bend.
On Feb. 25, 2011, the woman and Bray did just that. She says she only had one drink at Tart, while Bray had a glass of wine and a beer.
She told Deschutes County Circuit Judge Stephen Tiktin, hearing the case after Bray waived a jury trial, that she thought Bray was charming and found it endearing he seemed to be interested in her work.
When he asked her to go back to his apartment for a glass of wine, the woman says she was hesitant, but that he told her it was just down the street in the Franklin Crossing building.
She agreed to go, but says she warned him she had to be up early for work on Saturday. The woman told the judge this was the first boundary she felt she set that night.
She says she set another after the two began talking more and drinking wine. She testified that she told Bray, "I doesn't do 'that' kind of stuff unless someone is my boyfriend. If that's not okay with you, I am going to leave now."
The woman says Bray made a joke, asking her, "What kind of stuff don't you do?" But she told the judge she said, 'You know what I mean,' and he later agreed.
The woman says Bray built trust with her by divulging to her that he was insecure about having to walk with a cane due to a ski injury and a botched surgery.
Afterward, Bray asked her if she wanted a tour of his house. She said she told him yes because she was curious.
The woman says that's when the date turned violent. She told the judge Bray pushed her down onto his bed, hit her in the face and began ripping off her clothes as he held down her arms.
"I felt like I couldn't lift them (my arms) up," said the woman. "He was clawing at my face, hitting me and spitting on me."
Bray's accuser says she couldn't believe what was happening to her.
"He had his hands around my neck, and there were a lot of things happening at once," she testified. "I felt like I couldn't breathe -- I had to get gasps of air."
The woman says Bray called her names and that she didn't feel like she was in her own body any more, that everything seemed like it was happening in slow motion.
"He told me that this is what I get for going home with someone on the first date and that it was my fault," she told the judge.
With brief breaks between the alleged rapes, the woman testified she was too scared to try and make her escape from Bray's apartment.
"He told me he could kill me," she claimed.
At one point, the woman says Bray ripped her by her hair and began raping her again.
"He yelled into my ear, 'Do you know what I'm doing to you right now? I'm sodomizing you!" she testified.
The woman told the judge, "I felt like I was going to die, and nobody was ever going to find my body."
The woman says afterward, Bray casually lounged on his bed reading and eventually fell asleep. That's when she said she tried to make her escape, crawling off the bed onto the floor and gathering her ripped clothing and great-grandmother's pearls.
She testified that Bray then asked her why she was leaving and she told him, "Because you hurt me."
Before leaving the apartment building, the woman says she noted Bray's apartment number and what floor she was on. She says she repeated them to herself over and over, so she could tell police exactly where she was.
After arriving home, the woman says she stared at her shower for about 15 minutes.
"I had to make a decision, if I was going to heal in private, or if I was going to report my rape," she testified.
She decided not to shower and took pepper spray and the largest knife she had in her kitchen and says she locked herself and her dog in her bedroom.
Not able to sleep, the woman says she wrote a journal entry about what had happened to her and named it, 'Wounded.'
In the entry, she says she wrote "I was raped tonight. I wanted him to like me, and he knew it."
Later, the woman says she went on Google and searched the terms 'Thomas Bray' and 'rape in Oregon.'
She says she Googled Bray because she was under the impression he was a doctor and was concerned if she reported the rape, police would take her to the hospital where he worked to get tested.
She told the judge she Googled 'rape in Oregon' because she wanted to know what the best way to go through with reporting her alleged assault was and what would take place.
When asked if she doubted what had happened to her, the woman said, "I knew exactly what he did to me, I just didn't want to believe it."
The Bray trial picks back up for a third day on Thursday.
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