By Shayna Jacobs
MANHATTAN SUPREME COURT — An NYPD patrolman accused of raping a drunk East Village woman admitted using a condom that night, according to a taped conversation played in court on Monday.
Kenneth Moreno, 43, is accused of raping a 27-year-old woman after escorting her home to her East Village apartment on Dec. 9, 2008. Moreno was called to the scene after a cab driver called police to report that his passenger was incoherent and vomiting in his cab.
The woman was working with the District Attorney's office and wearing a wire when she confronted Moreno outside the 9th Precinct house 10 days after the alleged attack.
"Tell me did you use a condom? I just have to know — that is my biggest concern," the woman asked in the recording.
The woman questioned Moreno about using a condom several times before he eventually told her: "Yes I did."
Moreno's lawyer, Joseph Tacopina, argued his client only admitted to using the condom to calm the woman down after she threatened to storm into the 9th Precinct and make a scene.
Moreno denied having sex with woman over a dozen times during in the taped conversation, his lawyer said. A Manhattan Supreme Court judge ruled Monday the recording could be used at trial.
The discussion between the Moreno and the alleged victim lasted about 20 minutes, during which time investigators were monitoring the interaction nearby, officials testified Monday.
Throughout the talk, Moreno addressed the alleged sex victim as "ma'am." He insisted "nothing happened that night" and pressed the woman to recall events from the evening.
"I remember waking up on the bathroom floor and you giving me water," she said in the recording.
"The next thing [I know] I'm in my bed and you're taking my clothes off and having sex with me," she added.
Moreno is heard on tape telling the woman he would be her boyfriend if she stopped drinking.
"Are you kidding me?" she responded.
Moreno sounded apologetic at times on the tape, saying he was sincerely trying to help the woman.
"I should have called an ambulance for you," Moreno said. "I apologize for anything else."
Moreno's partner, Franklin Mata, 28, is accused of standing guard outside the victim's apartment on the night the alleged assault took place. Mata voice was not heard on the recording.
The two officers were placed on suspended duty after the allegations surfaced in December 2008. They face up to 25 years in prison, each, if convicted.
Jury selection in the officers' trial is scheduled for March 7.