Northeast Fresno nanny's tearful description of sexual assault, kidnapping while watching toddler

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Northeast Fresno nanny's tearful description of sexual assault, kidnapping while watching toddler

For the first time, we're hearing a terrifying story from the northeast Fresno nanny who was attacked as she took care of a toddler in June.

Based on her testimony, Joseph Ward is now headed for a trial on 12 felony counts -- including kidnapping, robbery, and sexual assault.

The victim has stayed anonymous since the attack and we're going to keep it that way, but she gave the intimate details of a terrorizing morning and she pointed to Joseph Ward as the man who forced himself on her.

A comfortable morning walk through a Woodward Park area neighborhood ended with a shock from behind just steps away from safety.

"I was pushing the baby up the driveway," the victim said through sobs. "And he came behind me and asked for water."

The woman we're identifying only as Jane Doe says the man pulled a long knife and forced his way into the house, threatening her and the baby as he stole her laptop and wallet and prevented her attempts to escape.

She thought she'd finally get rid of him once he had her ATM card and her secret code.

"That was when I told him he had everything, it was the correct PIN and that was when he said, 'OK. I'll leave, but you have to dance for me,'" said Jane Doe.

"What did you take that to mean when he said he wanted you to dance for him?" asked prosecutor Matt Johnson.

"I thought that he was going to rape me," Jane Doe said.

She said he did sexually assault her in a very specific way -- the same way a stripper testified he also treated her a few months earlier -- and then he went for the jewelry and cash.

We're not allowed to show Ward from Wednesday's court appearance, but Fresno police believe he's the man in the surveillance video watching Jane Doe withdraw money from an ATM.

"So I threw the money [at him] and I jumped back on the sidewalk and he said he was going to keep the car, and then he left," Jane Doe said.

The defense argued it's a case of mistaken identity.

Prosecutors presented no DNA or cell phone tracking evidence Wednesday, and Ward has a couple significant tattoos, but the victim didn't tell police she noticed tattoos on her attacker.

But the judge decided there's enough evidence to go to trial.
Related Topics:
kidnappingsexual assaultrobberytrialFresno - Northeast
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