Convicted Of Attempted Rape, Defendant Says Victim Desperately Wanted Him
Harris: I'm irresistible, no?
Tony Anthony Harris is having difficulty understanding why police, prosecutors and judges in Orange County can't picture him as the irresistible stud craved by the woman he attempted to rape in April 2010.
According to Harris, he innocently sat in a Buena Park bar drinking beer and tequila at closing time and watched as his relentless pursuer, a female bartender, flirted with him, crowded his space in a "sexually suggestive" manner and made him touch her under her skirt.
The bartender told a different story: Engaged to be married, she had no romantic interest in Harris, told him to leave at closing time and found herself thrown to the floor.
"I've been watching you all night," Harris said, according to her testimony. "I want to fuck you right now."
With Harris straddling her, the woman quickly thought to defuse the situation by telling him that he should have asked for her phone number so they could arrange a rendezvous.
When she was allowed up, she quickly dialed 911, but Harris saw her, broke the phone, pinned her to a wall and apologized.
"Let's just talk," he allegedly said.
Arriving police officers found Harris, who originally denied being inside the bar and later asked if he was being detained for "coming on aggressively with a waitress."
Police also recorded that Harris told them he's a "weird cat" with violent fetishes and that, in his view, the bartender wanted him because she wore "a short skirt and low-cut shirt."
The woman's screams, call to police and attempts to flee equated to her willing participation in their mutual foreplay.
Is that so difficult to understand?
In the past, an Orange County jury and three state appellate justices--Eileen C. Moore, William Bedsworth and Kathleen O'Leary--haven't accepted Harris' version of events.
This month, a federal judge in Southern California considered all of the defendant's complaint and found no constitutional violations in his trial.
Upshot: Harris, who already served his 4-year prison sentence**, must continue to register as a sex offender.
**A superior court judge was on the verge of handing out a shorter, two-year prison term, but became annoyed during the sentencing hearing when a remorseless Harris insisted that the woman had agreed to be beaten up during sex.
Get the ICYMI: Today's Top Stories
Catch up on the day's news and stay informed with our daily digest of the most popular news, music, food and arts stories in Orange County, delivered to your inbox Monday through Friday.