PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The trial of a Pittsfield man charged with raping a 15-year-old girl on multiple occasions has started.

The Berkshire Eagle (http://bit.ly/2w13mYX ) reports that prosecutors said in opening statements Monday that 42-year-old Christopher Root took advantage of situations that put him in close proximity with the girl, whom he’d known most of her life.

The alleged assaults occurred in the summer and fall of 2014. The girl eventually told her grandmother.

Root’s attorney told the jury that the assaults “simply didn’t happen.”

The defense says the girl had a motive to lie and admitted doing so to a witness in the case. The defense added that there was no medical evidence and no witnesses to support the girl’s accounts.

Root has pleaded not guilty to charges including two counts of rape.

Information from: The Berkshire (Mass.) Eagle, http://www.berkshireeagle.com