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Testimony continues in preliminary hearing for 3 accused in Marine wife's death

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VISTA (CNS) - A woman told a roommate that she was choked into unconsciousness by her Marine boyfriend -- who is charged along with her in the murder of a 22-year-old military wife -- during bondage and sadomasochistic play at their Fallbrook home, according to court testimony Tuesday.

That testimony came on the second day of a preliminary hearing for Dorothy Maraglino, 37, Louis Ray Perez, 46, and 25-year-old Jessica Lynn Lopez, who are charged in the strangulation death last April of Brittany Killgore.

All three defendants were involved in sexual behavior that included bondage, torture, and master, servant and slave role-playing, and Killgore was an "unwilling participant" in those activities, sheriff's detective Susan Fiske alleged in search warrant affidavits.

The witness said Maraglino told her "master" Perez -- a Camp Pendleton staff sergeant also known as Ivan -- had choked her out with a belt and his bare hands during bondage and sadomasochistic play.

Killgore -- who had filed for divorce from her Marine husband -- went missing the night of April 13 after agreeing to go on a dinner cruise with Perez. Her nude body was found four days later near Lake Skinner in southwest Riverside County.

A friend testified that Killgore texted the word "help" shortly after leaving with Perez. He told the friend that he dropped Killgore at a bar and saw her go off with "two guys," according to the friend's testimony.

The witness -- who said she did not participate in the bondage and sadomasochistic activities with the defendants -- testified that she decided to come forward and tell authorities what she knew:

"I felt like I owed it to Brittany, to give her parents closure."

The witness called Maraglino an "extremist" who was submissive to Perez but had Lopez as a sex slave, complete with a dog collar that read "Property of Miss D (Dorothy)."

A woman who dated Perez from 2008 until last year testified that he was gentle when they started dating, but their sexual relationship turned "rough," complete with biting, spanking, tying and binding and choking.

"I was a little bit scared, but I looked up to him," the woman testified.

According to court documents, Perez said in online posts that he was planning to have a BDSM session the weekend Killgore disappeared.

Perez allegedly took Killgore to his Fallbrook home -- where authorities said they found ropes, whips, a Taser, a nightstick, spiked gloves and a "sex dungeon" -- before texting Lopez and Maraglino to join him.

At some point, Perez decided to kill Killgore, authorities allege.

The preliminary hearing -- expected to last five days -- will determine whether there's enough evidence for the defendants to stand trial.

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