HASTINGS, Mich. (WOOD) - The defense team for former Major League Baseball player Chad Curtis says it will call some 30 witnesses to defend him against multiple charges of criminal sexual conduct involving students.
Three alleged victims in the case took the stand Tuesday in a Barry County courtroom. They claimed that Curtis inappropriately touched them. He faces six counts of criminal sexual conduct.
One victim claimed during Labor Day 2011 Curtis pushed up her shirt and sports bra, kissed her breast, and then put his hands under her spandex and on her genitals.
"I was scared. I was petrified. All of a sudden he was pulling my shorts off," she told the courtroom on Tuesday.
Defense attorney David Dodge asked the victim whether she continued to work out with Curtis after the alleged incident. She said yes. She attended morning workouts five days a week where Curtis would open the gym for the athletes.
"I was trying to be the person I was before all this," she said.
A second victim testified Tuesday that Curtis rubbed lotion all over her body while she was babysitting for his kids.
"He asked me if it felt good. I said, 'Yes.' I didn't know what would happen If I said no," she said. "I was just praying for him to stop."
A third young woman on the stand said Curtis touched her inappropriately at Lakewood school under guise of physical therapy.
"I trusted Mr. Curtis," she testified while being cross-examined. "I didn't know he would do something like that."
Tuesday two more young women are slated to take the stand with similar claims.
Defense attorney David Dodge says his team is preparing a vigorous defense that includes 30 witnesses and video evidence. Experts retained by the defense are also expected to testify. Eight of the witnesses are expected to testify to Curtis' character.
Dodge says he still expects testimony in the trial to wrap by the end of the week. The prosecution says the case could go into next week.
Curtis denied the allegations in a May 2012 interview with 24 Hour News 8 but its not clear if he will take the stand in front of the jury.
Dodge said the decision on whether or not Curtis would testify was an "open issue".
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