Bell Gardens man ordered to trial for kidnap, rape, 10-year imprisonment of 15-year-old girl

SANTA ANA, Calif. (KABC) -- A Bell Gardens man was ordered to stand trial on charges of kidnapping and raping a 15-year-old girl that he later married and lived with for a decade.

Orange County Superior Court Judge Robert R. Fitzgerald ordered 41-year-old Isidro Medrano Garcia to stand trial Friday.

Prosecutors say he abducted the teenage daughter of his live-in girlfriend in 2004 after she was brought from Mexico to live with her mother in Santa Ana and that he repeatedly had sex with her.

Prosecutors say he "groomed" the victim by "buying her gifts and taking her side when the victim and her mother argued."

Shortly after, Garcia allegedly kidnapped the victim, who is now 25, at a park, took her to a house in Compton and gave her paperwork with a false identity.

The victim's mother reported her missing and suspected Garcia of sexually abusing her daughter, but she had no evidence.

"I was 15. I couldn't do anything," the alleged victim said in an exclusive interview with Eyewitness News.

Garcia prevented her from fleeing and falsified her age to force her into marriage. She said when she tried to escape, Garcia beat her. He allegedly did not let her out of his sight, and in 2010, he got the victim pregnant.

"This is a different type of captivity, prosecutor Whitney Bokosky said. "It is more of a mental captivity. She doesn't know where else to go, she doesn't know where else to turn to."

In 2014, the victim went to a police station in Bell Gardens to report a domestic violence incident. During the investigation, police officers realized she was connected to a missing-persons report filed by her mother in 2004.

Garcia pleaded not guilty to one count of rape, one county of kidnapping with intent to rape, and three counts of lewd acts on a child. He is being held in lieu of $1 million bail and is set to appear in court on May 5 for his arraignment.
Copyright © 2021 KABC-TV. All Rights Reserved.