Sunday, August 03, 2014

Rapist faces jail after jury rejects claim he suffers from 'sexsomnia' and can't remember attacking teenage girl at a party

This nonsense seems to be dying slowly

A man who raped a teenage girl at a New Year’s Eve party told a court he had no memory of the attack because he was asleep at the time.

Michael McAllister, 23, said he suffered from ‘sexsomnia', a condition which causes him to have sex in his sleep.

When arrested after the attack McAllister had told police: ‘It's not the first time I have had sex with someone while I am asleep.’

But a former girlfriend told the court the only thing she remembers him doing in his sleep was snoring.

Last night he was told he faced a jail sentence after a jury refused to believe his claims and convicted him of rape.

Preston Crown Court heard McAllister had been invited to a New Year’s Eve party last year.

At the end of the night a number of people stayed over at the house in Thornton Cleveleys, Lancashire.

A 16-year-old girl remembered drifting off and being half asleep and feeling someone get into bed with her.

McAllister went on to intimately touch her and then to have sex without her consent. The jury heard the girl was too scared to fight him off and lay there shaking and crying.

Francis McEntee, prosecuting, said she attempted to get out of the bed and get away from McAllister but he just grabbed her and continued the sex attack.

In his evidence, McAllister insisted he had been completely unaware of anything happening and was surprised when he was kicked out of the house by other guests.

Dr Chris Idzikowski gave evidence to the court to say ‘sexsomnia’ was a real condition.

He said he even though McAllister admitted having drunk significant amounts of martini and vodka at the party he may still have suffered a incidence of the condition.

But Mr McEntee told the court McAllister's assertion that he engaged in sexual activity in his sleep was a ‘sham’ and the defendant had resorted to an ‘implausible explanation.’

The case is the latest in a series of controversial trials in which men have claimed they cannot be held accountable for rapes or sexual assaults because they suffer from the rare sleep condition known as parasomnia, nicknamed 'sexsomnia' because of its use as a defence in sex crime trials.

When arrested on suspicion of rape and confronted with DNA evidence against him McAllister told police: ‘It's not the first time I have had sex with someone while I am asleep.’

He denied raping or having sexual contact with the girl and told officers he had no recollection of what had occurred between him going to sleep and waking up alone on a mattress.

He claimed he had previously had sex in relationships while he had been asleep.

Mr McEntee called a former partner who gave evidence to say the only thing she had noticed about his sleep behaviour during their relationship was that he was a habitual snorer.

A jury convicted him of rape on a majority verdict after they dismissed his claims as lies.

The case has been adjourned to September 18th for sentencing, with a background report being compiled on McAllister by probation. He was told he will have to sign on the sex offender's register.

Allowing him conditional bail, Judge Heather Lloyd told him ‘A custodial sentence is inevitable, it's simply the length of time of that sentence.’

Last year a married teacher wrote to the Director of Public Prosecutions Keir Starmer to request a review of her case and other 'sexsomnia' cases after Paul Fallon, 41, was cleared of attacking her as she slept next to her husband at a friend's house.

But the court accepted Mr Fallon's explanation that he was asleep at the time of the alleged assault, which happened after a birthday party.

A jury found Mr Fallon not guilty 'by reason of insanity' because he could not control his actions while asleep.

Original report here




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