Tattoos, cocaine ‘bugs’ dominate testimony at rape, torture trial
Talk focused on three-dot tattoos and cocaine “bugs” in one El Dorado County courtroom on Tuesday morning.
As the rape and kidnapping trial of Eduardo Galecia-Hernandez entered its second week, prosecutor Lisa Serafini called four people to the stand during the morning session.
The most lengthy testimony came from South Lake Tahoe police officer Josh Adler, who was eating at Big Daddy’s Burgers with another officer in the early afternoon of June 10.
The two officers were approached by the boyfriend of a woman who said she was kidnapped, raped and threatened from her cocaine dealer hours before at the neighboring Beverly Lodge.
Adler testified he followed, then stopped, Galecia-Hernandez, the alleged cocaine dealer, as the man pulled from the driveway of the lodge.
Galecia-Hernandez faces life in prison if convicted by a jury of 11 men and four women. Three are alternates.
Attorneys on both sides questioned Adler, who spent 12 years with the Los Angeles Police Department before coming to Lake Tahoe, on the significance of the three-dot tattoo found on the left hand of Galecia-Hernandez’s wife, Jamie Lynn Olson.
The same three-dot configuration was embedded on the left inner thigh of the victim, referred to as Jane Doe to protect her identity through the trial, likely by a lit cigarette. Doe, who testified last week, said Olson burned her with cigarettes, beat her and scratched her. Olson, whose trial will come after her husband’s hearing and faces life in prison, also is charged with suspicion of forcing Doe to perform oral sex on her.
Adler said the tattoo means the “crazy life” and originated among gang members, although others such as teenagers are now donning the mark that no longer denotes criminal activity.
On cross-examination by defense attorney Lori London, the topic of cocaine bugs was raised. London asked Adler if the extended use of cocaine – Doe was awake for three days consuming the drug before the alleged rape and received the drug for free from Galecia-Hernandez – could cause hallucinations of bugs crawling under the skin.
Adler testified it was “fairly unlikely” cocaine users would have hallucinations but extensive use could cause paranoia.
London indicated a cocaine user’s body could be scratched by the person trying to rid themselves of the “bugs.”
“They’re in fact seeing things, the bugs, that don’t exist, correct?” London asked.
On Serafini’s second round of questioning, Adler testified it was more common to see the “bugs” when someone consumes both cocaine and methamphetamine.