A 55-year-old homeless man, identified by his last names Rojas Araya, could become the first person to be convicted for mistreating, or rather raping, a dog whom he considered his girlfriend, as one of the witnesses narrated.
Rojas, who has been in pretrial detention since last December, was sitting in the hot chair of the Pavas Criminal Court on Friday, listening to witnesses testifying against him.
According to the report by La Teja, prosecutor Claudia Villafuerte said it was clear that Rojas raped the dog twice in October 2017, in San Josecito de Alajuelita, and that the events had been witnessed by several people.
Ángela Quesada Abarca, a resident of Alajuelita, San Jose, in her eye-witness testimony told the judge, in a strong tone, how, on October 18, 2017, she saw the defendant rape the dog at the edge of the street.
“It was about six o’clock in the morning and I was in a taxi on my way home when the taxi driver told me ‘see! see!'” Quesada Abarca detailed, with great detail, what the accused was doing to the animal.
The woman described that, when discovered, the defendant fled to a vacant lot and the dog followed him, with difficulties.
Quesada added that she tried to file a complaint with the Fuerza Publica (police), but they put up many obstacles.
A second witness, Joselyn Hidalgo Mena, testified on the second sexual attack of a dog by the defendant, occurring on October 27, 2018.
“I was driving with my ex-boyfriend to my house when we saw that he (Rojas) was at the edge of the street raping a dog. (The dog) was screaming, you could tell it wasn’t having a good time,” said Hidalgo.
In the trial, Pablo Castro Castro, Joselyn’s ex-boyfriend, also gave testimony, corroborating the young woman’s version.
Both told the judge that after witnessing the abuse they were so shocked that they went to the Alajuelita police delegation.
“About forty minutes after, the officers arrived with him (Rojas) in a “perrera” (paddy wagon) and I heard him say ‘don’t take it (the dog) away from me it is my girlfriend’, that made me even more furious”, Castro recalled with a strong tone in his voice.
More witnesses gave their testimony. The “zaguatica” (street dog), named Ala by the Asociación para el Bienestar y el Amparo Animal (ABAA) – Association for Animal Welfare and Protection – not to be victimized again, was not present in the court or called to give witness.
While Rojas, who has been in preventive detention since his arrest, Ala is being well cared for at a Coronado shelter for animals.
On Monday, the trial is expected to end and the prosecutor’s office to ask for a sentence of four months prison for each count of rape – a total of eight months – against Rojas.