THE defence lawyer for a man accused of attempting to rape another man on the side of the street said the young man believed he was being stitched up by the gardaí. But the jury did not believe him and found him guilty of attempted rape and sexual assault.
Mr Justice Paul McDermott thanked the seven women and five women of the jury who took just over one hour to reach their unanimous verdict at the Central Criminal Court sitting in Cork.
The 30-year-old was remanded in custody for sentencing in Dublin on December 16 for attempting to rape a man in his sixties lying on a duvet on the side of the street in the early hours of the morning of May 30, 2017. A victim impact statement will have to be prepared in advance of sentencing. Blaise O’Carroll, defence SC, asked for a probation report. The judge also directed preparation of a psychiatric assessment on the accused.
Mr O’Carroll said in his closing speech today: “Mr (defendant’s name) is saying ‘it is not me’. He has taken that position from the get-go. He has not varied from that, good, bad or indifferent.
“(He believes) it is some sort of conspiracy by the guards and they are trying to stitch him up. He said something derogatory about him and Detective Garda (John Paul) Twomey has it in for him and this is the reason he ends up inside in court having to defend himself from something he is completely innocent of.”
Mr O’Carroll said: “(Complainant) said he was fondled front and back. But he was comatosed. And now he has a perfect recollection. Asked, ‘were you consenting to this?’ he said, ‘No, I told him to stop.’ Does that have a ring of truth about it?
“Rising up like Lazarus, now he is awake with a clear recollection of what happened. And you shoot forward to the following day when he is talking to the guard and he is now saying to the guard, it is transformed into ‘this man is fonding me back and front and sticking his finger up my anus’.”
Tim O’Leary, senior counsel, cross-examined the accused earlier in the trial: “Are you suggesting that because you called him a retard around town on MacCurtain Street (in 2016), you think he waited until October 18 2017 to wreak diabolical revenge on you — is he the cause of all this?”
The accused replied, “Yeah.”
Det. Garda John Paul Twomey said he was not assigned to Cork city centre in 2016 and had never met the accused before charging him in October 2017.
Mr O’Leary suggested that the defendant was denying the charges because he could not admit to himself what he had done. However, he said that was a matter for the jury to decide.
Mr O’Leary asked: “How did this person pretending to be you, who looked like you, who had met all three guards before, who knew your date of birth and had your signature, how did he have your social security card on him on May 30?”
The defendant replied: “I lost it a load of times.” In his direct evidence the accused said: “it was not me” and said he was heterosexual and had been with “loads of women” in his life. He said he had never met the complainant in the case.
The complainant said last week: “There was a hand touched me, inside my pants and everything. I was nearly asleep. I got very fidgety when that happened. It touched my penis. There was someone behind me.
“(Why he did not react). Because I was half drunk.”
“(His) penis went into my bum. I felt raw. Never happened me in my life. Never. Pants were pulled down on me (and underpants),” he said.
Mr O’Leary asked: “Did you do anything when this happened?”
He replied: “No, I did not. I am not a violent man. I was always kind and honest. I got up off the blanket. I told (others) something happened. They called the guards then… I felt shook, distraught. My head was rocking all over the world.”