SANTA CRUZ -- The victim of a brutal 2009 home invasion was convinced he was going to die as he lay on the floor of his home, bound and partially shoved into a closet.

"Death was what I was seeing," the man testified Monday during the trial of Maurice Ainsworth. "I was absolutely sure I was going to die and that my family was going to be killed."

The Sentinel is not identifying the family because they fear for their safety.

Ainsworth, 26, faces dozens of charges stemming from the Summit-area home invasion and his subsequent escape from custody in November 2010. The two cases were consolidated for purposes of the trial. Testimony resumed Monday after a week-long break.

The homeowner testified that at one point during the March 29, 2009 incident, he tried to grab the gun from one of the robbers.

"Fear and courage took over," he said, explaining how he grabbed for the rifle. "I was trying to take the gun away from him and he was trying to keep it." He was then tied up and bound, the tape against his mouth initially so taut it restricted his breathing. The robbers loosened his bindings when they came over to ask for his PIN numbers, he said.

They took his wallet, stole his watch off his wrist and wrenched a ring off his finger. They threatened to kill his son and rape his wife if he didn't give them the correct PIN numbers for his bank accounts.


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The two men later moved a heavy chair on top of him, he testified, putting pressure on his chest and making it difficult to breathe.

After the men left, he and his wife called 911, not knowing where their son was at that point and worrying he had been kidnapped.

His wife eventually found their son shoved into an attic crawl space.

The homeowner told detectives that the man with the gun was wearing a mask, and appeared to be a black man of about 6 feet, 5 inches in height, which attorneys have said matches the description of Jyler Raines, who also was charged in the case. The homeowner said he thought the other assailant was about 5 feet, 10 or 11 inches tall, but he said in court Monday that that was just a guess.

Ainsworth is a black man who stands 6 feet, 7 inches tall and weighs about 250 pounds, his attorneys have pointed out.

Ainsworth and Raines were arrested later on March 29, 2009. At the time, Ainsworth possessed jewelry later identified as belonging to the homeowner, deputies testified previously.

The homeowner also testified Monday that on Oct. 5, 2010, days before he and his wife were scheduled to testify against Raines and Ainsworth at trial, they received a letter from the Santa Cruz County Jail. The envelope contained two small newspaper cutouts with the words "memorial service" and "death." "My understanding was that he was trying to prevent us from testifying," the homeowner said of the letter.

The witness will be back on the stand Tuesday morning.

Ainsworth was in custody awaiting trial in the home invasion when he broke free from a sheriff's deputy as she was putting his shackles back on after an MRI procedure at Dominican Hospital. He attacked the deputy, stunning her with her own stun gun and then stealing her gun. His escape set off a five-hour manhunt.

Follow Sentinel reporter Jessica M. Pasko on Twitter at Twitter.com/jmpasko96