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Cop Accused of Rape Did Not Intend to Hurt Anyone, Lawyer Says

By DNAinfo Staff on August 24, 2011 2:07pm  | Updated on August 24, 2011 4:55pm

MANHATTAN CRIMINAL COURT — Lawyers for the off-duty NYPD cop accused of raping a schoolteacher on her way to work insisted as they left court Wednesday morning that their client did not intend to hurt anybody.

“There is absolutely no doubt that there was no intent on the part of Michael Pena to hurt anyone,” defense attorney Martin Goldberg said. “There was certainly no intent to sexually abuse anybody on that day.”

Goldberg would not comment on whether his client planned to argue that he had consensual intercourse with his accuser.

He did note that they were awaiting toxicology and other medical reports related to the case.

Goldberg’s co-counsel, Juan Campos, had previously suggested that at least some of his client’s alleged actions could be explained by alcohol.

"I’m not saying alcohol excuses the behavior if it is true, but it may explain certain behaviors,” Campos said outside Pena’s arraignment last Saturday.

A source said that Pena was indicted in the case, but his arraignment, for which the officer waived his right to appear, was rescheduled for Sept. 21 because another judge had already begun to review the case.

Pena, 27, a three-year veteran of the police force, is accused of raping a 25-year-old schoolteacher at gunpoint behind a home in Inwood during the early morning hours of Friday, Aug. 19.

He is being held on $500,000 cash bail or $1 million bond, which his lawyers said he could not afford.

Dozens of family members showed up to court to support Pena on Wednesday — a fact his lawyers used to suggest his innocence.

“If he was the kind of person who didn’t deserve this kind of support, I assure you they wouldn’t be here in these kinds of numbers,” Goldberg said.