Jurors to resume deliberations in prep school rape case

28 Aug 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Deliberations Underway In NH Prep School Rape Trial.

CONCORD, N.H. CONCORD, N.H. (AP) — Jurors will resume weighing the credibility of two teens and other evidence in a case in which prosecutors say an 18-year-old senior raped a freshman as part of a culture of sexual conquest at an elite New Hampshire prep school.Owen Labrie was “going to get what he wanted and not take no for an answer,” a prosecutor said during closing arguments in the prep school graduate’s rape trial. Owen Labrie, of Tunbridge, Vermont, faces six sexual assault charges, three of them felonies, over his encounter last year with the 15-year-old girl in the attic of a near-deserted building at St. Paul’s School and offered different interpretations of email and Facebook messages the teens exchanged after the encounter in a campus building’s dark and noisy mechanical room on May 30, 2014 — two days before Labrie graduated.

Carney takes questions from the media at the end of day with no decision from the jury yet at Merrimack Superior Court, Thursday, Aug. 27, 2015, in Concord, N.H. Prosecutor Joseph Cherniske said the girl, now 16, didn’t report the rape for several days because she didn’t want to disrupt her sister’s graduation and because she “thought she could handle it all.” “She thought she could handle going with an 18-year-old boy for a Senior Salute,” Cherniske said. “She thought she could say no by holding onto her clothing and saying no and make it stop.” Labrie’s lawyer, J.W. Carney, told the jury the girl testified she had no recollection of her conversation with her best friend before meeting Labrie because to admit she stated graphically what conduct she was prepared to engage in “would destroy the whole image she’d been trying to create.” “If you conclude she was not being truthful then I submit it taints her entire testimony,” Carney said. “In order to put forward this story, she was willing to tell a lie about a critical fact right in front of you.”

The defense contends the two had consensual sexual contact but not intercourse. (AP Photo/Cheryl Senter, Pool) (Cheryl Senter/AP) In their final arguments Thursday, lawyers on both sides criticized Concord’s St. Paul’s, which boasts as alumni an international roster of senators, congressmen, ambassadors, Pulitzer Prize winners, Nobel laureates and other notables, including U.S. Labrie acknowledged Wednesday that he bragged to his friends he and the girl had sex and he had to use “every trick in the book” for it to happen. She acknowledged on cross-examination she helped Labrie remove her shirt and pants and didn’t protest because she didn’t want to be offensive. “It was calculated. Cherniske says it defies common sense that Labrie put on a condom and then had a moment of “divine inspiration” that stopped him from escalating their sexual contact.

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