A JURY in Orange District Court has found a young man not guilty of sexually assaulting a woman in a darkened bedroom at a party in Orange last year after she claimed he pretended to be someone she knew.
The man faced court accused of impersonating another man by whispering his name to the victim before he allegedly sexually assaulted her.
The accused told the court he had earlier briefly been introduced to the alleged victim at a party at his girlfriend’s house.
He said during the night at the party his girlfriend told him he had had too much to drink and needed to sleep it off for a couple of hours.
The accused told the court he was taken into the bedroom by his girlfriend where the alleged victim was already asleep in a double bed.
He said he got into the bed fully clothed before his girlfriend switched off the light and closed the door.
“I heard her [alleged victim] roll over and so I rolled over - I saw her face and she leant in and kissed me,” the man told the court.
“I kissed back passionately for a substantial amount of time - about one minute.”
The accused told the court he said to the alleged victim, “I can’t believe I am doing this to [his then girlfriend],” before the couple had consensual sex.
Earlier in the day Detective Senior Constable Lisa Shorrocks told the court after the alleged victim and her mother went to Orange Police Station to report the sexual assault police visited the house and gathered forensic evidence, which included finding the wallet of the accused in a bed.
Judge Martin Blackmore told the jury they should not be prejudiced by the accused’s decision not to be interviewed by police.
He said the accused was exercising his right under the law.
He reminded the jury of several important points in the case, including earlier evidence where the alleged victim told the court she was not fully awake and in a “dream-like” and surreal state when the accused was in the bedroom.
The Crown case relied heavily on the allegations by the alleged victim the accused had come into the bedroom and pretended to be a man known to her.