A woman who was forced to walk naked down a street in Harlem in the middle of winter while being filmed by her jealous ex-boyfriend burst into tears on the stand on Monday as jurors watched the footage in shock.
‘He grabbed my neck, and forced it really hard. I was losing breath,’ the 25-year-old testified. The woman, whose name has been withheld said Jason Melo, ‘tortured’ her for two hours before he pushed her out into the cold and pulled out his cell phone to record her.
‘He was saying many things, like I’m a whore, I could kill you right now, I’m capable of anything,’ the woman told the court.
The ordeal lasted for several hours as Melo threatened to kill her after finding explicit texts from other men on her phone.
Melo, 26, also allegedly swung a heavy stone Buddha statue at her, as if he intended to bash her head in, while their two-month old daughter lay on the bed, just feet away.
Jasson Melo took video of the 24-year-old woman walking around in a towel as he berated her in Spanish and can be seen yanking the towel off her as she desperately hurried to seek cover
The woman, whose name has been withheld said Jason Melo, ‘tortured’ her for two hours before he pushed her out into the cold and pulled out his cell phone to record her
Melo, 26, has been charged with coercion, assault, aggravated harassment, menacing, criminal obstruction of breathing and endangering the welfare of a child
‘He said, you know what, you’re gonna pay. You’re gonna get naked and you’re gonna go out on the street, and you’re gonna pay,’ she testified.
In the footage which was posted to Instagram and LiveLeak, Melo could be seen following the woman wrapped in a bath towel, down the block while he berated her in Spanish.
In the two-minute clip which was seen by jurors on Monday, Melo was seen pulling the towel away forcing her to stand between two parked cars in an attempt to cover her modesty.
Melo says: ‘Take off your towel! Co-operate b***h. Show what you are, so pretty and so great. She’s a tart. Let’s go. Let’s go. Say hi to the camera and say why you’re doing this.
In the video a man, believed to be Melo, can be heard shouting at his girlfriend in Spanish calling her a ‘w****’ and a ‘b****’ while accusing her of texting other men
The woman, who is initially wearing a towel, is then stripped and made to walk around in the street while trying desperately to cover herself with the dust jacket from a motorcycle (right)
‘Take off your towel and pay the price for the shame I feel after telling you how pretty you were and that I wanted to start a family with you, but it the meantime you were talking to seven other men.’
The woman retorts: ‘But not to have sex with them.’
He then rips the towel from her, leaving her completely naked in the street, apart from a pair of boots. As she tried to hide between parked cars, he continued to hurl insults at her.
‘Pay the price for your shame!’ he bellowed at her. ‘You’re going to pay the price for being a whore. Since you’re a whore, you’re going to pay like a whore.’
Prosecutors said Melo sent the footage to various contacts on her phone and that it was posted online and went viral
Melo pictured listening to testimony from his ex-girlfriend in court. He allegedly tried to profit off his twisted fame by trying to sell merchandise with quotes from the degrading footage
‘There, on the trash, exactly,’ he sneered as she stopped by some trashcans. ‘Pose with your trash.’
The woman eventually wrapped herself in a motorcycle cover while Melo continued to film.
Adding insult to injury, Melo later tried to sell merchandise based on the video, including t-shirts and hats bearing his quotes.
One flat-billed cap bore the phrase, ‘Let’s go, participa,’ which Melo says in the video.
Jason Melo at Manhattan Criminal Court in Febaruary 2016 when her was charged with assaulting his girlfriend after making her walk down a street naked
At the time of his arrest Melo defended his actions saying: ‘I didn’t hit her or anything. Even the detectives are here with me and some of them congratulated me because they see how happy she is and I didn’t pull her hair or anything.
‘Some of the other prisoners are also on my side and they say some of them would have done worse things.’
Meanwhile the woman he is accused of beating, who has not been identified, has revealed that she was scared of Melo.
She told Univision: ‘He started threatening me, he threatened to slash my face.’
She said that since the incident occurred she has been hiding out in her apartment afraid while she takes care of her newborn daughter.
Melo faces up to seven years behind bars if convicted on the top count of felony coercion.