Tablet Local

Fort Worth man on trial in 2004 sexual assault

Something about her attacker “creeped me out,” a woman recalled Wednesday about a sexual assault 10 years ago.

The woman, now 30, described the man as scruffy and dirty, and said the whites of his eyes were yellow.

He accosted her outside a Pantego auto parts store, stuck a gun in her ribs and told her he “needed a ride.”

Afterward, she said, her attacker left her with this parting advice: “Don’t let this affect your life.”

This week, Charles Anthony Green, 56, is on trial on a charge of aggravated sexual assault and faces a maximum sentence of life in prison. His criminal record dates to 1996 with convictions for theft, assault and possession of a controlled substance.

Green was identified in 2011 using DNA recovered after the rape that was put into a law enforcement database, said Christy Jack, who is prosecuting the case with Kim D’Avignon.

Attorneys refer to the woman by the pseudonym Dawn Johnson.

Johnson testified that Green approached her Feb. 12, 2004, as she left her neighborhood auto parts store in the 2200 block of West Pioneer Parkway. It was 3 p.m. on a normally busy street, but Johnson had parked where the customers inside the store could not see her car.

Before she could react, Green stuck a gun in her ribs and pushed her into the passenger seat of her car, telling her that he “needed a ride,” she said. She handed him her keys and offered him her car and her money, but he refused.

“He said he was not going to hurt me,” Johnson said. “I didn’t believe him. I thought he would kill me.”

Johnson said she considered jumping out of the moving car but thought he might shoot her.

Green covered her eyes with his wool cap and kept driving, Johnson testified. She could not tell exactly where they were, but they parked in an alley in the Meadowbrook area of Fort Worth and Green made her take off her pants and underwear.

“I kept screaming and then he put the gun to my head,” Johnson said. “I felt the barrel. I thought I was dead after that.”

The sexual assault did not last long, Johnson testified. Green told her she could put her clothes back on, and they drove off, Johnson said. After a while, Green got out of her car and walked aimlessly away, as if he was not sure where he was going, Johnson said.

Johnson said she moved over to the driver’s seat and called her mother.

Then she immediately drove to Arlington Memorial Hospital, where she was examined by a registered nurse trained in collecting evidence for use in sexual assault cases.

Johnson said it took years to get past the fear and anger she felt, and took some counseling. She is engaged to be married and has become a registered nurse.

Johnson said she hopes the trial will provide her with closure.

“My life kind of went off-track then,” Johnson said. “It’s been a roller coaster. I wait for calls for updates on the case and I’m anxious all over again.”

Her father testified that Johnson, who was then 19, weighed less than 100 pounds the day of the assault. Seeing his daughter in the hospital made him feel helpless, he said.

“She looked broken,” the father said. “I’d never seen her like that. What could I do? I just held her. It was something I could not fix.”

Johnson’s mother said she called police a couple of times each week right after it happened, then once every week, and then once every month.

“I felt deserted,” the father said. “I never expected to see this day in court. But I hoped I would.”

Testimony is scheduled to continue today in visiting Judge Charles Bleil’s court.