Man accused of attacking woman during photoshoot at Carlsbad motel to stand trial

Matthew Terrell faces 6 years in prison

VISTA, Calif. - A man accused of posing as a photographer and tying up a college student in a Carlsbad motel earlier this year was ordered to stand trial Thursday.

Matthew Terrell, 27, is accused of false imprisonment and assault with the intent to commit a sexual act. He faces six years in prison if convicted.

The alleged victim, a 21-year-old female, took the stand Thursday in a Vista courtroom and faced Terrell, who looked down during her testimony and appeared to be taking notes.

The woman said she met Terrell in June through the social website OkCupid, and she told the court that Terrell sent her a message on the site. According to the woman, in the message, Terrell offered her $50 an hour to model athletic wear so he could take promotional photographs for big-name companies.

The woman, who was 20 years old when she met Terrell, said she was in her fourth year of college and needed the money.

The alleged victim explained that she and Terrell were originally supposed to meet at another location to take some photos of her in athletic wear. She said he then changed plans, so they met at the Motel 6 on 1006 Carlsbad Village Drive.

The woman testified that when she walked into the motel room, she saw a number of athletic shorts.

"He suggested that we try this pose that he liked and mentioned that like tennis players signed with Nike always did like a behind, arms crossed, behind-the-back pose," she testified.

However, that was when she said Terrell used a zip tie to tie her wrists and attacked her.

"But he pushed me to the center of the room, to the bed, and then I started resisting because I realized that, kind of what was going on," the woman said. "I was in shock … I couldn't believe this was actually happening."

She added, "He put me on my back on the bed and I was struggling, like kicking and flailing."

She said she bit him and tried to break free as motel guests called police after hearing her screams for help.

Carlsbad police said she made it out with only minor injuries.

Terrell is free on bail.

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