According to his testimony, the 10-year-old boy was just looking for a pencil when he walked in on his sister being raped by their stepfather two years ago.
“I thought it wasn’t right. It looked weird to me so I ran upstairs,” the boy said.
The stepfather in question is Jelani Maraj, brother of rap star Nicki Minaj, who is facing a criminal charge of predatory sexual assault in Nassau County (N.Y.) Supreme Court. He’s accused of raping his stepdaughter regularly over the course of three years, beginning when the child was 11, Page Six reports.
Wearing a bow tie and suit and holding a yellow, star-shaped toy, the boy told prosecutors Monday that he walked in on Maraj and his sister in a spare bedroom. He said his sister’s underwear was around her ankles while Maraj’s “private parts” were touching his sister.
The boy testified that Maraj later tracked him down and asked him if he had seen anything, slapping him across the face repeatedly. Maraj then told the child that he would never see his mother again if he told anyone what he saw, the boy told the court.
Newsday reports that by the time the boy, who was then 8 years old, walked in on Maraj and his sister, she had been enduring repeated rapes for eight months.
The testimony brought against Maraj thus far has been damning. According to Page Six, last week a doctor testified that the young girl’s medical records “strongly suggest” she was having sex. Prosecutors allege that the child was being raped by Maraj as many as four times a week.
An earlier Page Six report indicates that a search of the house by police, who were called by child-protective services, uncovered a pair of the girl’s pajama pants with Maraj’s DNA on them.
Maraj’s defense team counters that the rape allegations against its client are part of a scheme to extort $25 million from Maraj’s famous older sister.
Maraj’s attorney David Schwartz says that Jacqueline Robinson, Maraj’s ex-wife and the mother of the two children, became obsessed with Minaj’s money—going so far as to beat and brainwash her children into claiming that their stepdad had abused them.
Schwartz says that Robinson then told Minaj she could make the charges go away for $25 million.
During cross-examination Monday, the boy denied that his mother ever physically abused him.
Minaj, who Page Six reports will be the defense’s “star witness,” will testify on her brother’s behalf once the defense presents its case. If convicted, Maraj could face up to life in prison.