Lesbian Couple Kidnapped, Beaten, And Raped Before Escaping Captors

"I didn’t know if she was alive anymore," said one victim of her wife.

A lesbian couple in Indianapolis was kidnapped, beaten and sexually assaulted over a period of days, according to authorities.

Three men—Kenneth A. Braswell, 32; Thomas J. Bell, 26; and Jose Nieves, 35—face a total of 26 charges, including criminal confinement, kidnapping, rape and battery by means of a deadly weapon.

Raymond Boyd/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

The victims, who are married, told police they went to the house on the morning of November 10 to do heroin. One of the women borrowed a car from a third woman on the premises, but when she failed to return it on time, the owner became irate. She allegedly got angry and told her, “I’m keeping your wife until I get my car back.”

The victim at the house told police the woman then struck her in the head and pushed the barrel of a gun into her forehead while the others tied her hands and feet with duct tape. At one point, according to her testimony, she was also raped.

When her wife returned, the two moved to the basement where they were assaulted and had no access to food or water. “I didn’t know if she was alive anymore,” one stated in a probable-cause affidavit as she watched their captors beat her wife.

On November 14, four days after they were kidnapped, they were put in a car, where they say they heard Nieves talking about taking them somewhere to kill them. The car got a flat, though, and while their captors pulled into a gas station they asked the restroom. Inside the store, the couple asked the cashier to call police.

They locked themselves in the bathroom until authorities arrived. When police searched the house, they found guns, duct tape, bloody sweatpantsl, and a “large blood puddle” in the basement.

A jury trial for the three suspects begins January 22.

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