For three-and-a-half hours in a Multnomah County courtroom Thursday, defense attorneys for Charles McGee and Aubre Dickson attempted to discredit Erica Naito-Campbell's account of being sexually assaulted by both men on May 10, 2012.

Christine Mascal, a former Multnomah County prosecutor who represents McGee, began the cross-examination on the second day of an explosive trial of two former leaders in Portland's black community.

The case pits the word of the alleged victim, the daughter of a powerful real-estate family, against McGee, the founder and former CEO of the Black Parent Initiative and Dickson, a banker and former chairman of the state Housing Stability Council.

Mascal hammered at potential inconsistencies in the allegation as Naito-Campbell, 38, broke down in sobs recounting the night of the alleged attack. But Naito-Campbell stuck to her account.

Mascal attempted to find discrepancies between the story Naito-Campbell told WW in early 2018 and her subsequent accounts of the evening in interviews with the Portland Police Bureau and before a Multnomah County grand jury.

Mascal picked at Naito-Campbell's description of how many drinks she'd had an an event at the University Club where she joined McGee, now 33, and Dickson, 44, that evening.

She probed the timeline and how the three got from the University Club to an east-side strip club to McGee's home, where the sexual assault allegedly occurred.

Mascal asked about whether Naito-Campbell was interested in having sex with either man or both that night. (She said she wasn't.)

Naito-Campbell acknowledged in response to a question that she, McGee and Dickson had bantered about sexual topics at the University Club and in that conversation, she'd said that having a threesome was on her "bucket list,"—although, she testified, not including either of them.

Naito-Campbell testified that she had rejected McGee's advances after they left the University Club. He twice placed his hand on her leg while in his car, she said and she reminded him he was married. "Not tonight, I'm not," she said McGee replied and placed his wedding ring in the car cup-holder.

Mascal asked whether Naito-Campbell made it a practice to talk about sex with men. Naito-Campbell said she never shied away from the topic.

"I'm just a plain-spoke, frank person," she testified.

Charles McGee in Multnomah County Circuiy Court on March 14, 2019. (Aimee Green, The Oregonian/
Charles McGee in Multnomah County Circuiy Court on March 14, 2019. (Aimee Green, The Oregonian/

Mascal also returned to essays Naito-Campbell wrote last year.

Naito-Campbell says she was writing to process the trauma of what happened to her in May 2010 and the stress of going public with her story. Mascal and Dickson's attorney, Stephen Houze, repeatedly referred to the writing as Naito-Campbell's "book," and insisted her motivation in going public with her story is that she hoped to profit from it.

Reading from Naito-Campbell's writing, Mascal highlighted a passage in which she wrote that McGee "raped" her. (He is charged with sodomy and sexual assault but not rape.)

"You said he 'raped' you," Mascal asked Naito-Campbell. "He didn't, did he?"

Naito-Campbell explained the writing was meant to be private and for her own benefit.

"He violated me," Naito-Campbell testified. "He raped my humanity. My humanity is me. I am that person who had her life taken from her."

When Mascal pressed her, Naito-Campbell explained the nature of the writing.

"I was not writing a document for a criminal trial in court," she testfied. "I was writing this to process what I was going through."

Aubre Dickson (left) and Charles McGee in Multnomah County Circuit Court on March 14, 2019. (Aimee Green, The Oregonian/
Aubre Dickson (left) and Charles McGee in Multnomah County Circuit Court on March 14, 2019. (Aimee Green, The Oregonian/

Mascal walked Naito-Campbell again through the events of May 10, seeking to undercut Naito-Campbell's story. If she hadn't wanted to go to McGee's home, Mascal asked, why didn't she call a cab from the strip club?

Naito-Campbell said she expected Dickson, whom she considered a friend, would take care of her and ensure she got back to her car downtown.

"I trusted Mr. Dickson," she testified.

Why didn't she scream when first Dickson and then both men allegedly assaulted her?

"My body went into survival mode," Naito-Cambell said. "I was afraid I was it would escalate into something violent."

Mascal expressed skepticism that the only thing that saved Naito-Campbell, who was 5'2″ and 110 pounds at the time, from being forcibly raped was that she managed to hold her hand over her vagina as both men allegedly pawing at her.

She noted both men were much larger and stronger than Naito-Cambell. "Neither of these two could get your hand off your vagina?" she asked.

"I did everything I could to stop this from happening," Naito-Campbell replied.

Matt Mertens, a civil attorney for the Perkins Coie law firm, which represents Naito-Campbell, observed the second day of trial. He called Mascal's grilling of Naito-Campbell "shameful."

"The notion that Ms. Naito-Campbell or any woman would concoct a story of sexual assault to have her text messages and emails trawled through and note from her therapy strip-mined is ludicrous and patently offensive," Mertens said "This is why victims of sexual assault do not come forward."

Houze, Dickson's attorney, began his cross examination in the last 30 minutes of the day.

Houze also focused his questioning on Naito-Campbell's writing.

Having established that Naito-Campbell, a graduate of Lewis & Clark Law School and a member of the Oregon State Bar, is duty-bound to behave ethically even when she's not practicing law, Houze attempted to make the argument that Naito-Campbell had committed an ethical breach by not telling a grand jury last year or prosecutors until recently that she was writing about her experience with McGee and Dickson.

"You did not volunteer to the grand jury that you were writing about this case," Houze asked. "You did not say that, did you?"

Naito-Campbell denied hiding anything or seeking to profit from the writings.

Houze also questioned Naito-Campbell about why she failed to document what she said were bruises on her arms, thighs and wrists and why, if she were as bruised as she claimed, neither her parents, her son nor her therapist noticed.

She explained she didn't have any plans to file a police report or speak to the press.

Houze noted that Naito-Campbell had called her four closest friends, none of them living in Portland at the time, to tell them what happened to her on May 10, 2012.

"You have the cellphone camera and the ability to use it," Houze said. "Did you send photos?"

"My friends didn't need corroboration and the horror of seeing the bruises on my body," Naito-Campbell testified.

Houze questioned why Naito-Campbell didn't show the bruises to her therapist, whom she first saw about 10 days after the alleged assault.

"So the bruises had magically vanished?" Houze asked.

"They didn't magically vanish," Naito-Campbell replied. "It's a natural process."

The trial resumes at 9 am Friday morning and is scheduled to last through March 22.