You can now read 10 articles a month for free. Read as much as you want anywhere and anytime for just 99¢.

Rape suspect awaits dangerousness hearing

Anthony J. Vega

Ted Fitzgerald/POOL

Anthony J. Vega

PLYMOUTH — A Pembroke man was ordered held without bail Monday pending a dangerousness hearing on charges that he kidnapped a homeless woman early Saturday and drove her around for hours before raping her on a secluded gravel driveway in Hanson.

Anthony J. Vega, 49, pleaded not guilty in Plymouth District Court to charges of kidnapping and aggravated rape.

Continue reading below

According to prosecutors, Vega picked up a 34-year-old homeless woman in Roxbury’s Dudley Square between midnight and 1 a.m. Saturday and said that he would get her a motel room for the night. Instead, he began driving away from the city and told the woman he was taking her to a different motel, according to a police report.

Vega, who told the victim his name was AJ, got off the highway and began driving on back roads in areas the victim described to police as “where there would be no people.” As Vega drove along dark roads, the woman tried several times to open her door and flee, but the door was locked, police said. At one point, she “reached over and pulled the steering wheel in an attempt to crash the car so she could get away from him,” police wrote in the report.

In the car, Vega allegedly told the woman repeatedly, “I’m not going to hurt you,” and “I want us to make love,” according to police.

After driving for three to four hours, Vega headed into a wooded driveway out of view of houses or passing cars.

“He reached in and grabbed her by the arm and dragged her out the driver’s door,” Hanson police wrote. “He forced her to the ground on her back and held her down with his body weight.”

As Vega raped the woman, she punched him in the head and face, police said. When he got up, she fled into the woods. Before escaping, the woman wrote Vega’s license plate number on her hand, police said.

The woman walked through the woods until she came to a road, where a passing motorist picked her up and took her to a store in Hanover, where she called authorities, police said.

In court, Vega’s attorney, Timothy A. Shyne, presented a different version of events, saying the woman is a prostitute and that she and Vega were both smoking crack cocaine and planned to “party together.”

“My client is very candid about the fact that they were both using crack cocaine, and that is the reason they were together,” Shyne said.

Shyne said the rendezvous soured at a Cumberland Farms when they ran out of crack cocaine and the woman wanted to return to Boston. Vega, thinking she was trying to steal his car, refused to bring her back to Boston and the woman threatened to accuse him of rape, Shyne said. Vega then left the area to “cool off,” Shyne said.

At 8 a.m. Saturday, Vega was found reading a newspaper at a Hanson resident’s swimming pool wearing nothing but a towel, and he appeared to be under the influence of drugs, prosecutors said.

Shyne said Vega told him he went swimming because he was “very high on cocaine” and needed to cool down.

Vega was transported to Brockton Hospital and was arrested there later Saturday.

In 2006, Vega was charged with aggravated rape, assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, and assault with a dangerous weapon after a woman said he forced her to perform oral sex on him in his car in Kingston, according to court records. Those charges were later dismissed.

Vega is scheduled to appear in court again Friday for a dangerousness hearing.

Colin A. Young can be reached at colin.young@globe.com.
Loading comments...

You have reached the limit of 10 free articles in a month

Stay informed with unlimited access to Boston’s trusted news source.

  • High-quality journalism from the region’s largest newsroom
  • Convenient access across all of your devices
  • Today’s Headlines daily newsletter
  • Subscriber-only access to exclusive offers, events, contests, eBooks, and more
  • Less than 25¢ a week