AUBURN – It started during the 1998 ice storm. It ended a year-and-a-half later, an alleged victim of Raymond Samson said in court Friday, testifying about the abuse he said he suffered at the hands of the convicted pedophile.

Now 20 years old, Samson’s accuser spent more than two hours on the stand, giving an account, sometimes detailed, about how he was molested starting at age 10.

It happened about a dozen times at Samson’s Lewiston home, he said. Samson, now 56, is serving a 30-year prison sentence stemming from a 2006 conviction on 16 sex-related charges charges involving six children plus two other charges connected to the case.

Samson appeared Friday in the makeshift courtroom in Androscoggin County Superior Court’s law library wearing a faded navy blue jail suit. He sported a beard, his thick white hair tied in a long ponytail.

Attorney John Topchik, who represented the alleged victim, took his client back to his childhood. Justice Thomas Delahanty II presided over the half-day bench trial. He promised a decision in about 10 days.

The alleged victim said he had moved with his father and younger sister to Auburn after his parents divorced when he was 5 years old.

The family rented an apartment in Samson’s Auburn building. Later, the boy’s father bought a house in Auburn, but remained friends with Samson, who used to give the father rides to his job at Bath Iron Works.

The family went to stay at Samson’s Lewiston home during the historic 1998 ice storm. That’s when the abuse started, he said.

His father, who was an alcoholic, had passed out that night on a couch in the living room. The boy’s sister was asleep on the floor. The boy had slept in a bed in a private bedroom. He awoke early the next morning to find Samson performing oral sex on him. Samson also was videotaping the act, he said.

He said he pretended to be asleep. “I didn’t want him to know that I knew…I was scared. I was just a little kid,” he said.

He told no one about the alleged incidents until the day of his high school graduation. That’s when he confided in his mother, whom he had gone to live with until a year-and -a-half after the abuse started, he said. Even then, he had kept the abuse secret from just about everyone he knew, including his sister, who testified on his behalf Friday. He never sought therapy, he said.

Samson’s attorney, Leonard Sharon, suggested the lawsuit was a ploy by an opportunistic teenager who sought to capitalize on Samson’s conviction and his wealth.

He pointed to discrepancies in the plaintiff’s account, contradicting himself when recalling the times and dates of abuse as well as remembering in which of Samson’s three houses the events occurred.

He also told a defense attorney in a sworn statement earlier that he didn’t think the events really affected him, Sharon noted.

But he told his attorney on the stand Friday: “It bothers me still to this day all the time.”

Sharon said there was no physical or testimonial evidence supporting the plaintiff’s story of repeated abuse, which Samson denied Friday.

Unlike during his trial last year, Samson took the stand Friday in his defense, saying he never molested the plaintiff.

But Samson also denied Friday that he had ever had sex with anyone younger than 16, despite testimony by victims in last year’s case that resulted in his conviction. He said the photographs he snapped of naked children were artistic and intended for a nonpornographic magazine.

The plaintiff at Friday’s trial had gone to Lewiston police to report the abuse, but the criminal case was first shelved then dismissed by the court after Samson’s appeal of last year’s conviction was rejected by the Maine Supreme Judicial Court.

The court ordered last year that $250,000 of Samson’s real estate be attached in the event the plaintiff were to win his civil suit.

Topchik asked Justice Delahanty to award the plaintiff $1 million in damages.

“We’re dealing with the intentional maiming of a child,” he said.

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