Two women, 19 and 20 years old, gave testimony in the Vista courthouse on October 19, describing an ordeal during which they said they were kidnapped and raped last May.
The women said the 33-year-old man living in the apartment below them, Jeremy Ryan Stutzman, lured one of the women away from the other and bound and gagged and molested her; he then forced her to phone her friend to draw the next victim into his grasp.
Both women said their attacker used a hunting-type knife with a foot-long blade, which he often held to their throats to emphasize death threats and his demands to “just shut up.”
The women said Stutzman set up a video camera to record forced sex acts the night of May 30, 2011. He also demanded his captives to make multiple clothing changes from lingerie that he had spread around his apartment floor. “It came from a drawer in my apartment,” one woman said.
While Stutzman was taking one gagged woman outside to a car, the woman remaining inside his apartment said she was able to wiggle out of the ropes binding her arms to her legs. She ran from apartment to apartment in the Vista complex, banging on doors until someone answered. The first woman got help at about 9 p.m. that night.
The other woman said she was driven around San Diego County all night, and at one point her abductor dialed his parole officer and demanded that his captive tell the person who answered that it was all a “misunderstanding.”
The alleged kidnapper released his captive at about 9 a.m. the next morning, in front of the same apartments from which she had been abducted, according to her sworn testimony.
Defense attorney Matthew Roberts revealed with his questions that Stutzman told his alleged victims he had been “seven months’ sober” before the incident.
Prosecutor Patrick Espinoza alleges that Stutzman has a prior strike from a 2001 conviction in San Diego County in which the man committed a violent sexual assault and a burglary and used a deadly weapon. The prosecutor estimated that Stutzman could face more than 225 years in prison if he is convicted of all charges.
Superior-court judge K. Michael Kirkman ordered Stutzman to be held over for trial on 11 felonies and 25 special allegations, which include kidnap for crime, multiple victims, and binding and tying during commission of offense.
Pictured: Jeremy Ryan Stutzman
Photo by Bob Weatherston