The trial of a Bay Area man accused of trafficking, pimping, and having sex with a 17-year-old girl began in San Luis Obispo County Superior Court with testimony from his alleged victim.
The victim, now 18 and referred to only as Jane Doe, was SLO County prosecutor’s first witness against 40-year-old Richard Scott Brooks of San Francisco. Doe testified that Brooks, whom she met online, spent four days at her home in November 2014, where he coerced her into have sex with him. She also claimed that Brooks had sex with her while she was unconscious, and arranged for her to have sex with at least one other man for money.
“It’s this control of a human being that excites [Brooks]” Deputy District Attorney Gregory Devitt said in his Nov. 2 opening statement to the jury. “It’s the submissiveness he thrives on.”
In her testimony, Doe said she initially contacted Brooks and traded graphic photos, text messages, and videos with him. In November of 2014, while her family was away on a vacation, she said she drove to pick Brooks up from a train station in Fremont. She said she questioned her decision when she saw Brooks waiting at the station for her.
“I was regretting my decision,” she said. “It didn’t feel right. I felt bad about what I was doing.”
She said she went along with Brooks, and characterizing him as “very demanding.”
During the four days in 2014, prosecutors also charged that Brooks arranged for the girl to have sex with another man, Oscar Higueros Jr., 39, for $150. At the time, Higuerous was a paid volunteer for the Cayucos Fire Department. He is still awaiting trial.
Brooks’ defense attorney, Matt Guerrero, argued that the evidence would show that Doe presented herself as 18 online, and that the sex acts between her and Brooks were consensual, part of a sub culture of submissive/dominate sex.
“We believe the evidence will show that we have a young lady who was consenting, who wasn’t forced or coerced,” Guerrero said.
Brooks is charged with numerous felonies in connection with the case, including multiple of forced oral sex with a minor, pandering, and sex trafficking, among felony counts. If convicted, he could face life in prison.