Alleged rape victim in rugby players' trial tells court she was 'handled like a piece of meat'
A young woman who claims she was raped by two rugby internationals said she was "handled like a piece of meat" during the alleged sex attack.
As the 21-year old continued to give evidence at Belfast Crown Court, she maintained she was raped by both Paddy Jackson and Stuart Olding in the bedroom of Jackson's south Belfast home in June 2016.
She rejected suggestions she "ran with a lie" after she was witnessed having consensual group sex, and said that any inconsistencies given to the doctor in the aftermath of the incident were down to being in a state of shock after she was raped.
Ireland and Ulster rugby player Paddy Jackson (26), from Oakleigh Park in Belfast, and his 24-year old teammate Stuart Olding, from Ardenlee Street in the city, have both been charged with, and deny, raping the woman. Jackson also denies an additional charge of sexually assaulting her.
The sportsmen have both made the case that any sexual activity which occurred in the bedroom of Jackson's home at an afterparty following a night out in Belfast was consensual.
This claim has been repeatedly rejected by the woman, who said she was "handled like a piece of meat" by the accused pair, and who was 19 at the time.
It has already emerged during the trial - which is now in its second week - that a girl who also attended the afterparty walked into the bedroom in the early hours of June 28th.
When asked about this, the woman at the centre of the trial said this was "secondary" as she had already been raped, but admitted she turned her head away and was concerned in case the girl had taken a photograph.
During cross-examination from Brendan Kelly QC, representing Jackson, the defence barrister suggested this concern was more to do what this girl had seen, and the possibly of rumours or images appearing on social media.
When it was put to her that "in an intoxicated and excited state ... you that night engaged of your own choice in sexual activity," she said: "I completely reject that", and added: "Mr Kelly, I was raped. I don't think I can make myself more clear."
And when Mr Kelly suggested that she may have believed that the girl who entered the bedroom "witnessed group sex" which she may then had posted on social media, the woman replied: "Mr Kelly, again, I was raped. It was not consensual group activity at all."
Accusing the woman of later concocting claims she had been raped, she was asked by Jackson's barrister: "You were petrified that either the rumour or the proof this sexual activity would find its way to your friends, and that's what drove you on as far as running with this lie, is it not?"
Rejecting this, the woman said: "No, this is not a lie, Mr Kelly,"
She was also asked about texts she sent to friends on the morning and afternoon of June 28, 2016.
She ended a text she sent her friend telling her she had been raped, with three upside-down smiling emoji faces. When she was asked about these emojis, she said it signified mixed emotions.
She added that at that time "everything is going through your head, Why did it happen to me, what did I do to deserve it."
And when it was suggested that the first friend she contacted was a girl who was mutual friends with the group of girls back at the party, and who would therefore be likely to be the first to hear a rumour or see something on social media, she replied: "No. That's an entirely twisted mindset and thought process you have just laid out there. That's not what I was thinking or feeling."
Frank O'Donoghoe, the barrister representing Olding, also cross-examined the woman, and she maintained that she was forced to perform oral sex on Olding whilst being raped by Jackson.
When asked why she didn't ask Olding to assist when he walked into the bedroom by saying 'help me, I'm being raped and I'm going to be raped again', she replied: "It was quite clear what Mr Olding's intention was as well. So much so that I turned to Patrick Jackson and said 'please not him as well.' This man was not going to help me. He was also going to rape me."
Accepting Olding didn't verbally order her to perform oral sex, she said "there were no words exchanged ... there was no consent established."
When Mr O'Donoghoe claimed that Olding had come into Jackson's bedroom "to crash out" but instead found her and Jackson "having sex", she countered "why did he rape me then? Those are not the actions of someone who came in to crash out."
Olding's barrister further claimed that she "beckoned" him to stay, and "he did stay and you performed oral sex on him quite voluntarily and quite consensually". She replied: "I completely refute everything you have just said."
After making the case that after ejaculating, Olding went to another bedroom where he fell asleep, she told Mr O'Donoghoe he could "suggest that", and repeated she was not sure if Olding had remained after the oral sex, telling the court "I am not going to change my stance on that."
She was then asked about the version of events she recounted to a doctor at the Rowan Centre, on the evening of June 28, 2016.
Mr O'Donoghoe pointed out that at no point did she mention she had been orally raped. Instead, the barrister said, she told the medic she had been vaginally raped three times.
She replied by saying that during the incident there were stages she didn't know who was behind her raping her, and that she couldn't remember all the details of the medical due to her shocked state.
When asked if she was exaggerating her state to explain an "utterly inconsistent history" given to the doctor, she told Mr O'Donoghoe: "You are underestimating the state of shock you go in to after you have been raped."
She also accepted she didn't know who Olding was, but admitted she later identified him from a photograph on Jackson's Facebook in his "team kit."
Earlier in the hearing, the jury of nine men and three women were shown clothes worn by the woman on the night in question. These items included her pants, a pair of white trousers and a black sequined top.