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Mets’ Farmhands Testify in Rape Case

July 15, 1999

FORT PIERCE, Fla. (AP) _ Two New York Mets minor leaguers testifying in the rape trial of a teammate said they thought the girl involved consented to sex with them.

The girl, now 18, testified earlier that Vincente Rosario, 21, forced her to have sex with him and several others in a motel room in Port St. Lucie last year. Three players were convicted of sexual battery last October in the case.

Assistant State Attorney Steve Levin, who says Rosario planned the attack, called on two players to testify Wednesday.

Ruddi De La Cruz, 19, said Rosario called him into the motel room, where the girl was naked on the bed with Rosario on one side and another player, Natividad Tavarez, on the other.

``I wouldn’t have gone in the room if Rosario hadn’t called me in,″ De La Cruz said. But he said he thought the girl wanted to have sex with him because she never resisted.

``She was having normal sex with me,″ De La Cruz said. The state dropped charges against him in exchange for his testimony.

Jose Brea-Tousent, already convicted in the case, testified that he received a phone call in his motel room to ``come and see what we have here.″ Brea-Tousent told police the caller was Rosario.

Brea-Tousent testified that went to the room and had sex with the girl, but he thought it was consensual because she motioned with her hand for him to come to her.

``She never tried to push me away,″ Brea-Tousent said.

Brea-Tousent, Tavarez and Milton Gonzalez are serving two-year sentences for the crime. All of the players involved are from the Dominican Republic and have been suspended by the Mets until the case is concluded.

Rosario, a former New York City high school star, signed with the Mets in August 1997.

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