The adopted son of a former Oklahoma City police sergeant told a judge Monday he lied when he accused the officer of molesting him.
The testimony came at a preliminary hearing for Maurice A. Martinez, 45, in Oklahoma County District Court. Testimony resumes Tuesday morning.
Martinez is accused in a 37-count criminal charge of sexually abusing four teenage boys while they were in his care. He is being held in Oklahoma County jail. Most of the counts involve the adopted son who now says nothing sexual ever happened.
“Did he do that?” defense attorney David Slane asked, going through the sexual allegations in the charge one at a time.
“Absolutely not,” the witness said repeatedly. “No sir.”
Martinez came under investigation after the adopted son, now 17, told women at his church in January he'd been molested for about a year. He later told police the same thing but then recanted in a video and in a written statement.
The boy took a bus to Utah in March. He was found there April 14 and was returned to Oklahoma. He now lives with a sister. He admitted Monday that Martinez got him the bus ticket.
He said he made up the sexual abuse allegations because he was upset and wanted out of Martinez's home. He said he had been beaten by another of the officer's adopted sons and feared he would be hurt again. He said he was upset Martinez had not disciplined his attacker who gave him a black eye.
He said he slept with Martinez in the officer's bed because other boys in the house picked on him. He said he thought that sleeping arrangement would make his accusations more believable.
He called Martinez “my dad,” and said he now wanted to set things right.
Prosecutor Gayland Gieger said the boy told him before testifying Monday that if he told the truth about what happened it would destroy his family. The boy denied saying that.
Martinez had been a foster parent for 11 years and “has had numerous boys under his care during those years,” police reported. The Department of Human Services has said Martinez cared for about 60 foster children.
He was charged in April. He resigned as a police officer last month.
The first witness Monday was one of the former officer's foster sons. The foster son, now 22, told the judge Martinez sexually abused him one time years ago. He testified he saw Martinez have inappropriate sexual contact with other boys in the officer's home.
The foster son also testified he told police Martinez sent his initial accuser to Utah. He said he traveled to Utah with Martinez to visit the boy in April. He said he worried the officer planned to hurt the boy. He quoted Martinez as saying, “I want to see him float.”
The foster son also said Martinez asked him to take the blame for pornography found on the officer's home computer and cellphone. Prosecutors say 25,000 images of gay pornography were found on the computer and 500 pictures of naked males were on the cellphone.
Defense attorneys say Martinez is not the one who downloaded those images on to the computer or phone.
Special Judge Larry Jones is hearing testimony to decide if the evidence is sufficient for a trial. A decision is expected Tuesday. Many of the counts are likely to be thrown out.