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Jury discharged without reaching verdict in Kendal rape trial
3:28pm Tuesday 9th October 2012 in News
THE JURY in the trial of a teenager accused of raping a 39-year-old mother at a party in Kendal has been discharged without reaching a verdict.
After deliberating for more than nine hours the jury at Carlisle Crown Court told the judge there was no hope of them ever reaching even a 10-2 majority decision.
Now 18-year-old Dean Joseph Morton, of Acre Moss Lane, Kendal, will have to wait until October 19 to hear whether the Crown Prosecution Service intends to take the case to a retrial before a different jury.
In the meantime he was allowed bail.
During the six-day trial the woman claimed that Morton raped her in her bedroom after she had gone upstairs to find some “soothing” CDs after a young man in the house was taken ill.
He admitted having sex with her but pleaded not guilty to rape, saying it was with her consent.
The woman denied that she had agreed to sex with the teenager, saying she had been left “numb and shocked” by her “horrible” nine-minute ordeal.
She said that afterwards Morton whispered to her: “This is just between you and me.”
She admitted that police had come to the house twice during the party after complaints from neighbours because of the noise.
And she initially denied being drunk – until she changed her mind after being shown a video taken by the headcam on one of the officers at her front door, which showed her subjecting him to a foul-mouthed drunken rant as he asked her to keep the noise down.
In evidence Morton said the woman’s story was “a pack of lies” and that she had even asked him to stay the night after the time when she claimed he had raped her.
He admitted that in two interviews with the police after his arrest he had denied having even consensual sex with the woman, but said this was because he was too “embarrassed” to admit having sex with a 39-year-old, Five witnesses for the defence, all of whom had been at the party, gave evidence which cast doubt on the woman’s version of events.
One of them said she had heard the woman asking Morton to stay the night after the time at which she told the court he had raped her.
Defence barrister Tim Evans told the jury this evidence showed that there was never a time when – in the timescale the woman had given – Morton had been alone with her.