Trial begins for man accused of raping women in North Hills, Beaver County
A woman told jurors on Tuesday that she pleaded with her assailant not to rape her as he held a gun to her head.
“I kept telling him don't do this to me. Please don't do this to me,” the Hopewell woman said, crying. “I knew what my eyes were seeing, but my mind was not believing it.”
The woman, 50, was the first of Arthur Henderson's three rape victims in January 2012, prosecutors said. Henderson, 39, of Ross is charged with 60 counts, including multiple counts of rape; aggravated, sexual and indecent assault; robbery; burglary; false imprisonment; unlawful restraint; and criminal trespass. His trial before Allegheny County Common Pleas President Judge Donna Jo McDaniel began Tuesday. Henderson is representing himself.
The assaults took place at two North Hills apartment complexes and the Hopewell woman's home. Deputy District Attorney Laura Ditka said during her opening statement that the attacks “shattered the safety and security” of the suburb.
Police said Henderson followed the first victim home from Rivers Casino on Jan. 7, 2012, and raped her at gunpoint in her bedroom while her ex-fiance's son and his cousin were nearby. Henderson forced himself inside the Ross apartment of the second victim, raped her and then bound her wrists and ankles with duct tape.
The woman was stoic when she took the stand and relayed to the jury what occurred. The Tribune-Review does not identify victims of sexual assault.
She choked up when describing how Henderson raped her twice and barely winced when Henderson cross-examined her.
“This is the chair that I was raped on,” she told the jury, pointing at a photo.
The third victim, a resident of the Cascade Apartments in Ross, was in the same room as her 4-month-old child when Henderson raped her, police said, and adjacent to a room where Henderson had tied her fiance's hands behind his back.
Adam Brandolph is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-391-0927 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Starkey: Steelers still knockin’ on Canton’s door
- Steelers notebook: Spaeth on baby watch
- Pitcher Arrieta, Cubs shut down Pirates in victory at PNC Park
- Pirates notebook: Liriano shrugs off rain-ruined start
- Thrival concert event moves from Bakery Square to LTV site in Hazelwood
- Thrill of hunt feeds obsession for plant bargains at end of summer
- Heyward-Bey looks to make impact on special teams with Steelers
- GOP convention host Cleveland shaking off Rust Belt image
- Derry boy recovering at home after high-profile intestinal transplant
- Bridge replacement sends Fawn motorists on detours
- N.C. State was best fit for former Lincoln Park star Rowan