Tuesday 25 April 2017

Jury returns 'not guilty' verdict in rape trial

Friday 21 April 2017

Jury returns 'not guilty' verdict in rape trial

A jury has unanimously found a 30-year-old man not guilty of attempted rape, rape and indecent assault in Jersey's Royal Court.

Kevin Irving had maintained his innocence throughout the trial this week, and he appeared relieved when he heard the verdict and went on to embrace his family and friends who were present in Court.

It had been alleged that Mr Irving raped and indecently assaulted a 31-year-old in July last year. 

Addressing the jury in the Royal Court on Thursday morning, Commissioner Sir Christopher Pitchers, said that the prosecution hadn't presented enough evidence to support the indecent assault charge, and he directed the jury to find Mr Irving not guilty on that basis.

He also added that the evidence presented didn't support the "full offence of rape" and directed the jury to consider a charge of "attempted rape" instead. 

The Prosecution, led by Crown Advocate Conrad Yates, then told the jury: "Evidence supports there was attempted intercourse. Mr A said that as he came in the room, he is 100% confident that he saw Mr Irving on top of the victim. There is ample evidence in this case so that you can be sure that an attempted rape took place."

For the defence, Advocate Ian Jones said: "I think it is safe to say we have come a long way since the Prosecution introduced the matters and told you what the case was about. The sand has shifted quite significantly."

"The evidence you heard from the complainant is unhelpful to you because, in a nutshell, in the material aspect of this case, she doesn’t remember. It may be the case that she regretted it or wished it never happened, but if consent was given at the time, it cannot be revoked after. A drunken consent is nevertheless a consent. 

"The complainant remembers everything except the crucial bits."

The 12 jurors retired for about two hours before handing in their not guilty verdict which they reached unanimously.

Advocate Jones then made an application for Defence costs on behalf of his client.

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