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Woman testifies in Las Vegas officer’s sexual assault trial

The woman who accused a Las Vegas police officer of over a decade of sexual abuse testified in court Monday, pausing several times over four hours to compose herself.

She said she was sexually assaulted more than 50 times in 11 years, from age 8 to 19.

Metropolitan Police Department officer Bret Theil, 39, faces 27 counts that include kidnapping, sexual assault and lewdness with a child.

Prosecutor Stacey Kollins asked the woman to describe one instance, per year, of the abuse. The woman, 21, said she was first sexually assaulted at the house of one of Theil’s friends, when she was 8. She said Theil threatened her younger sibling to keep her from telling anyone about the abuse.

She was afraid to report him, she said, because he was a police officer.

“The thought had come to mind, but it felt impossible,” she said.

She testified that on numerous occasions Theil locked her in a bedroom and assaulted her, including one instance when she was tied down. She also said that Theil handcuffed her to a bed while he screamed at her, called her “stupid” and “insane” and threatened to send her to a psychiatric ward.

She said she didn’t report the abuse until after she was 19 because she didn’t think anyone would believe her.

“I was powerless,” she said.

The woman is expected to continue her testimony Tuesday in District Court.

During opening statements last week, Theil’s defense attorney, Craig Mueller, said detectives didn’t properly investigate the woman’s allegations of abuse, which he called “pure fantasy and fabrication.”

Theil faces six counts of kidnapping, five counts of lewdness with a child under 14, six counts of sexual assault with a child under 14, four counts of sexual assault with a child under 16, four counts of sexual assault and two counts of child abuse, neglect or endangerment.He also faces one count of resisting a public officer in connection with an hourslong police standoff after his indictment last year.

Theil, who worked in Metro’s traffic division, has been fired from the department and is under house arrest.

A previous version of this story incorrectly reported Theil’s status with the Police Department.

Contact Max Michor at mmichor@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0365. Follow @MaxMichor on Twitter.

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