Victim testifies in attempted rape trial

Victim testifies in attempted rape trial
Richard Wayne Barras (Source: KPLC)

LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - A Lake Charles man is on trial for allegedly raping two women outside of their homes last year.

Prosecutors said Richard Wayne Barras tried to rape the women on May 25 of last year. In both cases the women’s screams alerted people nearby and stopped the attacks, according to police. Both women were over the age of 65.

The first witness was one of the two women Barras allegedly tried to rape. She was 73 then and was taking out the trash a little after 8 a.m. She says she saw a white sports utility vehicle driving slowly in her neighborhood. She testified that when he approached her, he first asked for help.

Then, the woman says he knocked her down and, though she resisted, he tried to rape her. Her screams were heard by a neighbor who came up and told the man to stop, which police say caused the attacker to flee. The woman went to a hospital for a sexual assault examination which is part of evidence collection. She confirms she is 100% positive she felt his private part pressed against her and identified Barras in court as the man who attacked her.

We are not reporting her name as we do not identify victims of sex crimes.

Thursday, the other woman attacked is expected to testify.

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