A 47-year-old Pacifica man accused of drugging his girlfriend’s teen daughter with sleeping medication, including a pill hidden in a bowl of ice cream, so that he could fondle and rape her, will stand trial.
Paul David Messersmith was held to answer on all five felony charges after a preliminary hearing Thursday. He is charged with forcible rape, rape by using an intoxicating substance, sexual penetration and battery. A misdemeanor sexual battery count was dropped for lack of jurisdiction.
He enters a Superior Court plea April 4.
Police arrested Messersmith after the 18-year-old girl told her mother, and then police, that on Dec. 11 she found a piece of pill in some ice cream he gave her after a driving lesson and was told the chunk was likely “an additive.” The girl said she grew woozy and laid on the couch with slurred speech when Messersmith pulled off her pajama bottoms and touched her. She said after waking up from a blackout, he carried her to a bedroom and raped her.
During a police interview the following day, the girl shared another incident where she ingested something odd tasting that Messersmith had given her and blacked out. The girl said she awoke to find herself in a hotel room with him fondling her chest but did not tell anyone out of concern for her mother’s relationship with him.
The police discovered the drug Messersmith allegedly used was Zolpidem, better known as Ambien.
If convicted, he faces life in prison because of the rape by intoxication charge.
He remains in custody without bail.