#collegesafety | Friend of alleged rape victim says one of the accused tried to have sex with her

The friend of a student allegedly raped by two men has told a trial that one of the accused tried to have sex with her before moving onto her friend.

She also testified that she heard the alleged victim moaning and saying the word “harder” while one of the men was on top of her.

The complainant was a student at a college in Co Donegal in February 2015 when she says the two defendants raped her after a night of drinking.

In a trial at the Central Criminal Court, the men, who have a legal entitlement to anonymity, have pleaded not guilty to two counts of rape of the woman in a town in the county.

The defendants are now aged 29 and 33 and are residents of Co Donegal. The complainant is now aged in her 20s.

The alleged rape happened after she and her female friend accepted a lift from two men at the end of a night out and ended up in an apartment. She earlier told the trial she was too drunk to consent to any sexual activity.

Giving evidence, the complainant’s friend told the jury they were both “very bad” in the way of intoxication, adding she thought the complainant “was worse”.

She said that back in the apartment she remembered being offered a vodka drink but declining. She viewed some video taken of the complainant in the bathroom being lifted to her feet by two men.

She said her next memory was helping her friend into bed and laying beside her.

“I remember I lay beside her and then all of a sudden the lights were off. I could have closed my eyes for a minute. Next I remember one of the guys was on top of [the complainant].

“I couldn’t tell [which one]. He was having sex with her. The other guy was on my side. He had his fingers up my dress and he was penetrating me…

“I remember [the complainant] saying ‘harder’. The guy beside me tried to put his penis inside me but I put my hands in front of myself and said: ‘No, no, no’.

“The guy on top of [the complainant] left the room and then the guy who had his hands up my dress went over to her and started having sex with her as well… I heard some moaning.”

‘Still drunk’

She said the next morning she woke up on the bed and one of the men was lying between her and the complainant.

“I was still drunk. We were both really confused, we didn’t know where we were. We were looking for her purse and her bag.” She said they were chatting to the men and the complainant asked one of them for cannabis weed.

Under cross-examination she agreed that in the days after the incident she told gardaí that the complainant “seemed drunk, she seemed ok drunk, she didn’t seem that bad”.

“From the very start I underestimated how drunk we were. In hindsight, looking back on it all. Not remembering things like coming out of the nightclub illustrates how drunk we were,” she said.

Earlier in the trial Barry White SC, defending, put it to the complainant that her detailed description given to gardaí of the route she took home was “not a description of someone who was blind drunk and hasn’t a clue where they are”.

The woman replied that it was a route she knew very well. She said her last memory was of her friend coming into her in the bathroom and saying “we have to go”.

She told Mr White that she was giving to talking in her sleep and “I have been known to moan and make noises in my sleep”.

The jury heard she told gardaí “I don’t know if I was moaning or not. I think I might have wanted him to go quicker so that it was over soon”. Counsel put it to her that this suggested “you were fully awake”.

“I was in and out of consciousness,” she said. Counsel asked her then why she didn’t say no.

“I was extremely drunk,” she replied, adding “I don’t believe I was sober enough to be able to give consent prior to being had sex with”.

Mr White put it to her that her statement to gardaí that she didn’t remember “when it stopped” and “I don’t think he was wearing a condom” were inconsistent with her evidence that she was too drunk to know what was happening.

The woman agreed that she could have phrased this part of her statement differently. The trial continues before Mr Justice Alex Owens and a jury.


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