The alleged victim in the teen-sex trial of Mendeecees Harris testified today  that he told her she was “better than [her] mother” after coercing her into “working jaws” by revealing his knowledge of a dark secret from her past.

Speaking in a barely audible whisper, her voice sometimes breaking, the  now-19-year-old woman told jurors in Hackensack that the former “Love & Hip  Hop” star went from being a “father figure” she could trust to someone who  forced her into sex for money after she moved into his Lodi home in the summer  of 2009.

After moving in with Harris, his girlfriend and her brothers, the woman  testified, she routinely reported to him for permission to go out, among other  reasons. Her mother was usually at work while she was home with Harris and the  boys after school, she said, during questioning by Assistant Bergen County  Prosecutor Demetra Maurice.

Because she didn’t have much of a connection with her mother, she said, she  confided in Harris.

“Mendeecees made me feel comfortable. He would give me advice.  He’d say ‘It’ll be okay between you and your mom’,” the woman said.

Then came an afternoon when, with no one else home, she realized in the  shower that she didn’t have a towel.

“I asked him to get me one, and he did,” the woman testified.  “Then he came  into my room and suggested I let him [pleasure himself] on me, but I just  laughed.”

The suggestions continued, she said, until she relented. She said Harris then  gave her $15 or $20 “for lunch or maybe a ball game.”

But that wasn’t enough for him, the woman testified: Using an extremely  private piece of information, he coerced her into providing “sloppy top”.

“He told me he knew I had been forced to have sex when I was 8 years old,” she said, “and he found out from my mother.

“ ‘Your mom doesn’t want you here’,” the woman said Harris told her before  exposing himself.

She said she complied with his desire out of spite “to get back at my  mom.”

“I felt betrayed by her,” she said.  “I didn’t tell her about it until I was  14, and it was something I didn’t want anyone to know.”

Similar favors were demanded – and provided — for “$15 or $20” when she  needed money for expenses, the woman testified. Eventually Harris enlisted her  younger brothers by suggesting, when they asked him for money, to “talk to your  sister. She knows what she has to do.”

The relationship ended, she said, when her mother took her cellphone to  punish her for missing curfew and found a message on it from Harris.

“I heard them in their room yelling, I felt bad,” she said. “She came in my  room and she was livid. She told me to get out. She was just screaming to me to  get out.  I don’t remember if she said why.”

The woman said she went to a friend’s house to spend the night.

“My mom didn’t know where I was,” she testified, “but Mendeecees did.”

The next day he came to find her, she said. He told her that her mother had  packed her belongings – and then asked her: “Please don’t tell her anything  about us,” the woman said.

“He said she didn’t know anything, so don’t say anything. It was something he  would ‘take to his grave.’ He [also] told me they were done.

“I felt horrible,” the woman said. “At one point Mendeecees and my mother  were going to get married.  I felt it was all my fault.”

Harris faces seven counts of illegal sex with the girl, including giving her  money as an inducement, Maurice told the jury, outlining a “very skillful  manipulation” of a young girl who “had had a bit of a rough upbringing.”

Some of the incidents allegedly occurred while the youngster was still 15 and  others after her 16th birthday, when Harris was more than four years older – the  standard in New Jersey for statutory sex assault.

If convicted of the charges, Harris would face up to 20 years in prison.

Defense attorney Brian Neary called the incidents fabrications.

“He never asked her for sexual favors and never, ever offered her money,” Neary said during opening arguments today, adding that the teen was troubled and “had her own problems.


Courtesy of  Cliffview Pilot