Ari Goldstein invited the 21-year-old woman up to his room at the Temple University fraternity house, the end to a night of partying at Alpha Epsilon Pi.
The two had met before, the woman testified Wednesday, and they’d had sex before as well. On this night, in November 2017, she and Goldstein — then the fraternity’s president — began having sex again.
But this time, the woman said, she asked him to stop when he shoved his hand into her mouth and held his arm down against her chest. And after he did, she said, Goldstein forced her to perform oral sex on him, holding her head as she said she cried and told him no.
The accusations by the woman, now 23, marked the beginning of Goldstein’s sexual-assault trial Wednesday. Goldstein, now 22, is charged with forcing himself on two women on separate occasions inside his room at the fraternity house — the encounter with the woman who testified Wednesday morning, and another incident in February 2018 in which he allegedly attempted to assault a freshman.
The Inquirer does not identify sexual-assault victims without their permission.
Assistant District Attorney Zachary Wynkoop said in his opening statement that the case centered on Goldstein’s refusal to listen when women declined his sexual advances.
“What this case is really going to boil down to is one word, two letters: No,” Wynkoop said.
Goldstein’s attorney, Perry de Marco Sr., described the criminal allegations as “sex, drugs, and rock-and-roll gone wild,” contending that much of the behavior expected to be described during the trial is routine on college campuses.
The women accusing Goldstein of crimes, de Marco said, are simply “confused,” contending that situations can be clouded because a woman can “dress like a hussy,” dance with men, take drugs with them, and lead them on.
“We have no idea, in today’s world in sexual matters, what is right and what is wrong,” de Marco said, adding: “If you don’t want to get burnt, don’t stick your foot in the fire.”
Temple suspended Goldstein’s fraternity in April 2018, after one of his accusers reported her allegations to police.
The woman who took the stand Wednesday morning said she did not report her encounter to authorities until after the other woman’s allegation had been publicized on the news. She testified that in the initial aftermath of her alleged assault by Goldstein, she described his behavior to her friends, but didn’t want to become involved in a prolonged legal process.
“I kind of just wanted the whole situation forgotten,” she said.