A 28-year-old man from County Cork who raped a 17-year-old as she slept was remanded in custody for sentencing next January.
The 28-year-old sobbed loudly in the dock at the Central Criminal Court as the jury delivered their 11-1 majority verdict of guilty to the charge of rape. He claimed she initiated matters and consented to sexual intercourse. She said there was absolutely no consent.
The rape commenced as the 17-year-old slept in a spare room at the defendant’s apartment. The defendant and his girlfriend were in their own room trying to get live streaming on their computer at about 5 am for the McGregor Mayweather Mixed Martial Arts fight. The defendant left the room for a few minutes saying that he was going to use the en suite toilet in the other room.
The jury decided after about seven hours of deliberations which commenced on Friday and concluded today that what happened was that the defendant began to have sexual intercourse with the 17-year-old as she slept.
The victim was not present today for the jury verdict. Two men from her family were present to see the verdict being delivered.
Siobhán Lankford, defence senior counsel, said, “My client has no previous convictions. I don’t think I require a probation report, I may require some character witnesses.” Prosecution senior counsel Tom Creed said a victim impact statement would be required.
Mr Justice Alexander Owens remanded the defendant in custody for sentencing on January 25.
“I will direct a probation report (for their views on) post-release supervision. Having regard to some of the material shown to me I feel it is very apposite and may be something of relevance to the probation service in relation to post-release supervision,” Mr Justice Owens said.
The defendant’s name will be added to the Sex Offenders Register. Details of the case which might identify the victim cannot be published.
The defendant pleaded not guilty to the single count on the indictment against him of raping a 17-year-old as she slept in a spare room at an apartment where he and his girlfriend lived.
The evidence was that the teenager along with her parents and others were out socialising and went back to the apartment for more drinks in the early hours of the morning. The complainant’s parents went home at around 4am and shortly after that she went to stay in the spare room at the apartment. She is related to the accused man’s girlfriend.
The prosecution's case was that the 25-year-old got into bed with the 17-year-old and tried to have sexual intercourse with her as she slept but that she woke up in the middle of it. The defendant said he went to the bathroom in her room, that she was awake, he sat down on the bed to chat with her, she squeezed his hand, kissed him, initiated matters and consented to sexual intercourse.
His girlfriend was in the next room trying to get live streaming for the McGregor Mayweather Mixed Martial Arts fight which was taking place after 5am (Irish time) on that morning August 27 2017.
In her direct evidence the complainant, who is now 20, testified, “I don’t remember what bedroom I was in. Next thing I remember I was aware he was next to me. I asked him what he was doing, because I felt him in me. I felt his penis in my vagina.
“I asked him what he was doing. That is the next thing I remember. He asked me was I on the pill. I said, ‘Yes’,” she said. She said she absolutely did not consent to sexual intercourse with the accused.
She said that when the defendant left the room, “He told me not to tell anybody.” The defendant accepted that he did ask her if she was on the pill and he did tell her not to tell anybody about what happened between them.
The defendant, who is now 28 and was 25 at the time, agreed he did say to her not to tell anybody what they had done – which he claimed was consensual sexual intercourse - “because it would kill (his girlfriend)” to find out.
The accused said that after 5am he went into her room to use the en suite toilet, wearing T-shirt and boxers. He said she was awake and he sat on the side of the bed chatting.
“As I was leaning on the bed her hand came to my hand and squeezed it. She pulled my hand towards her. Her other hand came up to my face, we were kissing. She was touching my penis outside my boxers. I was touching her private area outside her jeans,” he said.