Associated Press - "A 16-year-old girl whose parents thought she had run away from home returned with a much different story: She had been repeatedly beaten and raped by a man for four years, one of which she spent captive in his basement. John Paule France Gonzales, 22, pleaded not guilty Tuesday to 142 counts, including lewd and lascivious acts on a child, sodomy and penetration with a foreign object.
Gonzales was arrested Saturday when the girl returned home and told her parents she had been held in his parents' basement and endured repeated assaults, San Mateo County prosecutors said.
Gonzales, a pharmacy technician, began molesting the girl when she was 12, while he was dating her aunt, authorities said. He initially molested her at her home, and after breaking up with the aunt, he abused the girl in cars and hotel rooms before forcing her to live with him, they said.
"He used threats to himself, to her and to her family members to either play upon her sympathies or scare her into having sex with him for years," said prosecutor Melissa McKowan.
Gonzales' parents apparently were unaware that the girl was living in their home for 12 months. He would smuggle food into the locked room and dispose of the girl's feces in plastic bags to keep her hidden, prosecutors said.
After the home was foreclosed on last month, Gonzales took the girl back to La Honda to live with her family, McKowan said.
"In the beginning, she felt sorry for him and was trying to prevent him from killing himself," she said. "While there is an element of apparent consent, she was so psychologically abused by this guy. Our allegation is that essentially none of it was consensual. I mean, she was 12, for God's sake."
Gonzales was being held in lieu of $1 million bail. A preliminary hearing was scheduled Dec. 29 in San Mateo County Superior Court.
McKowan said they planned to file about 40 more counts against him if they receive approval from other jurisdictions to charge Gonzales with sex crimes that allegedly happened elsewhere in Northern California.
Gonzales' attorney, Jefferey Neubarth, said his client was a friend of the girl but he denies having any intimate contact with her.
"He's not an evil kid. He's not a bad kid," Neubarth told the San Francisco Chronicle on Wednesday. "He does have a family that loves him, and he cares for the minor. He didn't do anything to harm her, in his mind anyway."