DENVER (CBS4) – A detective testified in Denver court Thursday that the victim in April’s assault at Denver International Airport was headed to Illinois to become a nun.

Noel Bertrand, 26, of Portland, is accused of raping the woman on the largely deserted A Concourse just after midnight on April 12. Testimony for the preliminary hearing for the former Marine was presented Thursday morning, as well as pictures of physical injuries to the woman.

She suffered a swollen left eye and bruises to her hand. She told police her head was slammed into the ground during the attack.

Bertrand claims the sex was consensual.

The victim told police she had met the suspect at a bar and they had struck up a conversation over drinks about faith and morals.

Denver Police Detective Edward David testified that the two walked from the bar to the gate together and talked for another 20 minutes. The victim told police that when they changed seats and moved closer to the window, that is when Betrand did a, “180 turn. A Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde change,” testified David.

Police say Bertrand was spotted by surveillance cameras walking with the woman to a gate area. Although the incident that followed wasn’t captured by security cameras, the tapes of the suspect and the victim together are expected to be used as evidence by prosecutors.

The detective who interviewed Bertrand following the incident said Bertrand’s first comment was that he was a Marine recently discharged and that the incident would damage his image. Bertrand also told police he prefers a dominant-submissive role and believed the woman wanted to be submissive.

Two Frontier mechanics — Kris Musil and Mark Adams — were out on the tarmac and said they then saw the violent situation going on inside the concourse. They called 911 and quickly made their way inside.

“She was down on ground when we first got there. That’s when saw him take one last swing at her,” Musil said last month during a ceremony where Denver police honored the two mechanics.

Musil and Adams say they intervened and took command of the situation until police arrived.

They said the victim was very shaken up and that she was having an asthma attack when they arrived. They helped her find her inhaler in her luggage.

“She mouthed ‘Thank you’ to us when he finally let her go,” Musil said.

The Denver Post reported that Bertrand was a Marine for about 6 years, from 2003 to 2009, and that he won the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal.

Bertrand’s attorney pointed out there were inconsistencies between what the victim told police following the incident, and then later to hospital staff who examined her. The defense also pointed out there were statements from other witnesses who passed by telling police they though the two were a couple.

Bertrand described the incident to detectives as “animal attraction,” that “it was heated,” and that he knows how to “read women” and this particular woman “was resisting,” which told him that she wanted it.

Bertrand is due back on court August 8 for arraignment.

At last month’s ceremony Denver police gave the two mechanics a special commendation and the Daniels Fund gave $1,000, calling them heroes. Watch that report in the video clip below:

“I couldn’t imagine somebody not intervening and helping her,” Adams said.

Comments (148)
  1. Jimmy the Hat says:

    Are we sure he wasn’t a TSA employee giving her security screening?

  2. max says:

    the first will be last and the last will come the loudest

  3. SpringerRider says:

    She should have said, “Kiss me all you want but don’t get into the habit.”

  4. nose how 2 right says:

    No doubt the writer believes that it’s very important to inform everyone that this guy was a former Marine, because you know all former Marines are potential rapists.

    Maybe they should post his ENTIRE resume’ just in case he also worked at Wal-Mart once. What if he delivered pizzas too? Golly, potential rapists are everywhere!

    Also… “he WON the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal.” He WON it??? Was there a race? Some sort of contest? Perhaps he was the 15th caller. Members of the military are usually “awarded” medals. You “win” a prize.

  5. Nunyo Bidness says:

    Can somebody please explain why there’s not an automatic death penalty for all rapists?!

  6. jason says:

    Why was she in a bar, after midnight? Doesn’t sound like something a nun in training should be doing. More to the story if you ask me.

    Also, heros? for what?! doing what normal, every day humans should do? What a joke.

    1. BFC Cpl Jack says:

      Have you ever been in an airport in the late evening? The bars are generally the only place of refuge rather than sitting in vast empty concourse. What’s wrong with social interaction and one last quaff before the BIG step. Oh, by the way, “recently discharged” certainly does not apply one and a half to two years after the fact.

    2. LadyDi says:

      The woman was in the bar because it was the only place in the airport concourse open in the later evening hours. Her flight had been canceled and she could not get another flight until early in the morning and she had no money to go to a hotel, so she was staying in the airport overnight. She made the mistake of telling this young man, and allowing him to walk with her to the gate, that she was going to sleep overnight at the gate until her flight in the morning. She felt she was safe at the public airport.

    3. SpringerRider says:

      It sounds like you would have throw her off and got it on with him.

  7. fab mono says:

    Another Safe airport,my ass, look out below…A joke , and what agony for that poor woman……..

  8. eric redding says:

    She obviously wanted it. Tricksy vixen wanted one last pie stuffing before her shackled life as a nun.

  9. MilitaryBrat says:

    Innocent until proven guilty folks, how bout waiting till the jury is able to give their say after hearing the evidence.

    We’ve had enough men who’ve raped and women whom had faked it. Let courts do what they must do!

  10. Twurd says:

    The same thing will happen to this guy very soon, except he won’t see it coming and “she” will be far less attractive.

  11. Doug says:

    Whew…good to know that only former Marines rape
    (sarcasm completely intended)

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