St. Paul’s School Accused Rapist To Testify At Trial

26 Aug 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

NH Detective Testifies About Owen Labrie’s ‘Divine Inspiration’.

CONCORD, N.H. (AP) — A young man accused of raping a fellow student at an elite prep school in New Hampshire is set to testify in a trial that has exposed a campus tradition of sexual conquest. CONCORD, New Hampshire — Prosecutors rested their case Tuesday in the trial of a New England prep school graduate, after five days of detailed and often uncomfortable testimony.

Detectives who investigated the sexual assault of a 15-year-old girl described on the witness stand Tuesday the stunned arrogance of their suspect when he was questioned days after his encounter with the younger classmate. Prosecutors have argued that the so-called “Senior Salute,” in which male and female upperclassmen attempt to hook up with younger students before graduating, helped create conditions for the girl’s alleged rape on campus. Labrie, who was charged on nine counts, has maintained that a “divine intervention” stopped him from going all the way during his Senior Salute with the accuser. He is expected to take the stand Wednesday to offer his side of the story in a case that has shaken this small community and shone a spotlight on campus culture at one of the country’s most prestigious boarding schools. The state rested its case Tuesday after two forensic investigators testified a sample taken from the girl’s underwear matched Labrie’s DNA profile but they were unable to conclude it was his sperm.

Carney, said the detective had tried to catch Labrie off-guard by driving to Vermont to interview him and speaking to him without his parents present. But on the fifth day of the high-profile trial, the defense team’s stubborn insistence that Labrie didn’t have sex with the now 16-year-old girl appears to have weakened his case. During technical testimony Tuesday from a state forensics expert, jurors heard about a DNA test on underwear worn by the accuser on the night of the incident.

During almost four hours of interrogation by police, Labrie maintained he never sexually penetrated the 15-year-old girl last May while they were kissing on the fourth floor of the elite prep school’s science center. Yes, he’d invited her to check out a secret spot on the roof of a campus building on May 30, 2014, part of a tradition called the Senior Salute, where upperclassmen invite students to hang out, or hook up, before they graduate.

Investigators first met Labrie, of Tunbridge, Vermont, and his mother at a coffee shop, but after detectives said it would be better to talk at the police station, he agreed to be interviewed without his mother for nearly four hours. Other students testified this week that Labrie was competing with friends to see how many girls they could “score” with before graduation and described a range of sexual encounters from kissing to intercourse that were part of Senior Salute. They said Labrie gave no indication that the sex wasn’t consensual, and all agreed that students frequently exaggerate their sexual escapades when discussing them with peers.

Another expert, Kevin McMahon, said that he had earlier discovered a “strong indication” of semen in a panel of the underwear, and sent the evidence off to Swango for the DNA testing. Curtin said Labrie asked his mother to wait for him in the police department lobby and told detectives he would prefer they did not record the interview. She said that during the interview, Labrie often mentioned his accomplishments in school, later sent her his college admission essay and at one point asked, “Do you know anything about me?” Prosecutors say Labrie was two days away from graduation when he raped the girl in a building on the grounds of St. Prosecutors showed Facebook messages in May 2014 between Labrie and another friend, Tucker Marchese, who pressed for details about Labrie’s Senior Salute: “How’d it go from no to bone?” Labrie replied: “Just pulled every trick in the book.” But Solovaara had previously told investigators the opposite, and the judge reportedly told jurors that they could use this evidence to inform their assessment of his credibility. Paul’s School, which boasts as alumni an international roster of senators, congressmen, ambassadors, Pulitzer Prize winners, Nobel laureates and other notables, including U.S.

Last week the court heard testimony from 16 witnesses, including the accuser, her best friend, her mother, two nurses, a doctor, and the dean of students. Labrie was arrested and charged last summer with several counts of felony sex assault, misdemeanor sexual assault, endangering the welfare of a child, and using a computer to solicit or lure a child under the age of 16. She also said she’d sought the morning after pill from the school nurse, and that when asked if their sex was consensual, she’d answered yes. (The nurse confirmed this in her own testimony.) “It was so much easier,” the accuser told the court, explaining that she was in a rush to save her family seats for her sister’s graduation when she went to the nurse’s office. A hospital nurse who examined the girl two days after their encounter, administering the rape kit, testified that the girl had redness in her vagina that could be consistent with an assault, but could also be the result of non-sexual irritation. Concord Police Detective Julie Curtin, who first interrogated Labrie, said authorities were able to access more than 100 messages he had deleted from his Facebook account, which might suggest he had something to hide.

When Curtin finally met with Labrie and his mom, they seemed to “want to present Owen to us, to tell us who he was and what his accomplishments were,” instead of discussing the issue at hand. The school rector, Mike Hirschfeld, told students in a letter last summer that participating in games involving sexual solicitation would be grounds for expulsion, and has said in a statement that allegations about the culture at St. Also Tuesday, two different forensic investigators with the New Hampshire state police crime lab testified about the physical evidence in the case, of which there was little.

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