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SASEBO NAVAL BASE, Japan — For much of the latest hearing Thursday in his trial on charges involving the rape of a 19-year-old Japanese woman, Petty Officer 3rd Class Markies Steven Bates, 24, refused to answer questions from his attorney or the prosecutor.

When the Sasebo postal clerk finally did speak, he accused Nagasaki District Public Prosecutor Tomoyuki Nakahata of “trying to make me out as a violent person,” “twisting everything I say” and “driving me crazy.”

He said he thought the woman had consented to having sex. When asked how he felt toward her, Bates said, “I’d rather you just give me my sentence, and I can get out of here. Just go ahead and give me my 10 or 15 years; I’m tired of coming back in here. Like I’ve said before, he’s (the prosecutor) driving me crazy, really.”

Nakahata, who asked Thursday that Bates be sentenced to five years in prison at hard labor, read a statement from the victim in which she said her wish is for Bates to spend the rest of his life in prison. “My character has been stained, and I’ve been left with deep psychological scars. I wanted to kill him myself. I hope he never walks out of prison,” the statement read.

According to court documents Bates parked in a dimly lit Sasebo lot on Jan. 17 and approached the woman, speaking in English. The woman, who speaks little English, thought he was having car trouble, because he pointed to his car, indicating he wanted her to follow him. Bates shoved her inside and climbed atop her. She screamed before he covered her mouth and raped her.

The woman remembered the car’s license-plate number and called police, who arrested Bates a few hours later. At that time, the prosecutor said, Bates admitted to “having sex” earlier that morning.

At the first trial session April 8, the judge asked if Bates’ silence indicated he agreed with details of the indictment. He said, “Yes.”

Thursday, Bates said, “I have a lot of women. This is just a big misunderstanding. I don’t have to rape women. I’ve had many other women and had them a lot quicker than that.

“And also, I did apologize to the victim,” he added.

“He misunderstood and thought she liked him and was willing to have sex,” said defense attorney Hirofumi Inoue. “He thought he had succeeded in ‘picking her up,’ because she kept moving closer to him, and even shared her umbrella with him.”

Nakahata asked if Bates felt he had done something bad to the victim. “Don’t ask me any more stupid questions,” Bates said. “He is trying to make me out as this violent person, and that is not true. I don’t have a violent bone in my body.”

The court is to sentence Bates on June 24.

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