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‘Just be quiet,’ Cliffside Park girl, 14, says accused rapist told her

Photo Credit: Mary K. Miraglia, CLIFFVIEW PILOT Courthouse Reporter

EXCLUSIVE: A 14-year-old girl told jurors in Hackensack yesterday that the 21-year-old Fairview man standing trial for raping her two years ago put a pillow over face and told her to “be quiet. Just be quiet.”

With his other hand, she said, Marvin Flores-Gamez pulled off her jeans and panties and had sex with her.

“I told him no, no — but he didn’t listen,” the 4-foot-10-inch youngster with the plump, unlined face testified. “And he didn’t stop until I bit him on the shoulder, hard.”

Young-looking himself, the 5-foot-7, 175-pound Flores-Gamez “was an ordinary young man living his life, with a family, even working very hard to help his family pay bills,” defense lawyer Landry Belizaire told the jury earlier this week.

“This is the greatest country in the world, with the best legal system in the world. Why?” he asked them. “We have this jury system — you as citizens, in judgment of the facts.”

“All men and women by nature desire to know, and indication of this is the delight we take in our senses, even apart from their usefulness, for themselves,” Belizaire said, quoting Aristotle. “We prefer seeing to everything else. Among all of our senses it makes us know and brings to light many things.

“Rely on those – your sense of reason, and your sense of sight,” he said.

Belizaire then theorized that the rape was “planted” in the youngster’s mind by investigators.

“They provided the information, gave this little girl the story: ‘Oh by the way, did you have sex?  A man on top of a woman?’ And my client was charged,” he said.

Earlier, Assistant Bergen County Prosecutor Marybel Mercado Ramirez told jurors that they “don’t have to decide whether [the girl] did or didn’t want to be there…. [T]he law says you cannot engage a 12-year old in sexual intercourse, because under the law they cannot consent to sex.

“When a person engages in the sexual penetration of a child under the age of 13, the state need only prove to you the slightest penetration between the vaginal labia.”

Although Flores-Gamez contends that he didn’t have intercourse with the girl, the prosecutor said the acts that he admitted to constitute sexual assault under the law.

“The defendant at the time was 20 years old,” she said. “Marvin Flores pursued and romanced this 12-year old girl, and his purpose was to engage in sexual intercourse with her.”

Talking clearly and firmly, the girl yesterday recalled how she’d known Flores-Gamez from around the neighborhood, then was convinced by him that November 2011 to cut middle school and hang out in Fairview.

The honors student brought her cousin and her cousin’s boyfriend along, as well as her school books. At one point, she did homework.

Somehow, she said, Flores-Gamez got her into a bedroom, closed the door, then assaulted her after failing to convince her having that having sex was a good idea.

At one point, under detailed questioning from Belizaire, the girl replied: “I’m sorry. I don’t know what penetrate means.”

Others who’ve testified so far in the case include a Fairview police officer, a medical specialist, and the girl’s stepfather, who broke down Tuesday when he recounted how she admitted the incident after her cousin revealed that they’d played hooky.

“She denied at the beginning that anything happened,” he said through a Spanish interpreter. “I went to work the next day and I was very uneasy, wondering where they went.”

So he asked his daughter again, taking her into a bedroom and closing the door so that they could talk privately.

“She told me yes, he had abused her, and she didn’t want that,” the distraught father said, wiping his eyes. “And if she screamed he was going to hit her.

“She said Marvin is the one who did it,” he continued, sobbing. “She was crying, she screamed at me when she told me. She had never cried like that before.”

They both went to the Fairview police station a short time later.

There, he said, “I told the police my daughter had been taken by force.”

STORY / PHOTO: Mary K. Miraglia, CLIFFVIEW PILOT Courthouse Reporter

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