Alleged kidnapping & torture victim testifies in trial

An alleged victim in the kidnapping and torture case in Ishpeming took the witness stand in Marquette late in the day on Tuesday. She continued her testimony against Jason Sadowski and Charles Cope Wednesday morning. ABC 10 senior reporter Mike Hoey has a look at the day’s developments.

Alleged Victim #1, as we’ll refer to her to avoid revealing her identity, testified that she gave up all hope of survival while Jason Sadowski and Charles Cope held her captive last July in the basement of Sadowski’s mixed martial arts studio. She said her despair led her to try to hang herself.

“I hung off the duct tape,” she said. “I just figured if I was going to die, I wouldn’t give him the satisfaction and I was going to do it myself.”

Alleged Victim #1 said she also made an obscene gesture to Cope while he was in the room with her. However, she also testified at the preliminary exam that Cope tried to prevent Sadowski from discovering the suicide attempt out of fear of Sadowski. Cope’s attorney, Karl Numinen, brought up that subject during cross-examination.

Numinen asked Alleged Victim #1, “He tried to cover for the fact that you did this so that Mr. Sadowski wouldn’t retaliate against you or take action against you?” She answered, “Yes, sir.”

While Alleged Victim #1 did say at the prelim that Cope feared Sadowski would kill him and the two women if he aided them, she felt Cope had another concern in mind. “I guess he didn’t want to go to prison,” she said. “We were there for a couple of hours and he must have realized, he must have wondered what was going on, you know. Like, ‘you stupid fool; I should have left’.”

Testimony continued Wednesday afternoon with two of the police officers who responded to the scene, one from the Ishpeming Police and one who was working for the Negaunee Police at the time of the incident.

Sadowski is expected to testify before the case goes to the jury. Cope is not expected to take the stand in his own defense. Judge Jennifer Mazzuchi ruled in a pre-trial motions hearing that if Cope does not, statements he made to police may be used against him but may not be used against Sadowski.