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Accused is a ‘gentle giant,’ rape trial told
8:00am Wednesday 9th January 2013 in News
DEFENCE witnesses giving evidence for an apprentice engineer accused of raping a drunken woman described him as “a gentle giant”, a jury heard.
Simon Walters-Melville drank heavily on a night out before meeting the woman and going back to her home in Worcester at 5.30am.
The prosecution allege he raped her before she barricaded herself in a bedroom – but he insists they had sex by consent.
Walters-Melville, aged 25, of Tolladine Road, Worcester, denies rape on March 11 last year. Jean Flannery, who has known him for 20 years, told the jury he was quiet, caring and had been brought up “with lovely morals”.
She said: “He’s a gentle giant and puts others before himself. I have never seen him in a temper. He’s a lovely man.”
The defendant had attended a birthday party at the home of Melanie Tyler on the night of the incident before going onto a club.
Miss Tyler said: “He is one of the most caring people I’ve ever met.
“He is very honest and genuine and doesn’t become nasty in drink. Simon is very generous and looks after everybody.”
Defence barrister Simon Burns read out five testimonials at Worcester Crown Court in which Walters-Melville was described as easy-going, respectful, kind-hearted with “not a bad bone in his body”.
But during cross-examination, prosecutor Samantha Forsyth alleged that he had taken advantage of the 25-year-old woman who was more than three times the drink-drive limit and not in a fit state to consent.
Her bra was damaged and her thong and blouse were ripped.
A doctor found bruises and scratches on her arms and legs and internal injuries.
Walters-Melville had told police: “I didn’t really use excessive force.”
Asked by Miss Forsyth what force he did use, he replied: “I used force that seemed to be right at the time. There were no complaints.”
He accepted damaging her bra “in the heat of the moment” and believed he could have caused bruising when he picked the woman up and carried her to the stairs.
Questioned about her hiding in a bedroom after she woke up by the stairs, he said: “Possibly she regretted it when she realised we’d had sex together.”
Asked by Mr Burns if he had raped her, he said: “I never would. I’m not that kind of person. I’m not an angry or violent person. She was willing and able.”
Miss Forsyth added: “He was determined to have sex that night. Her capacity to consent was taken away by drink.”
The trial continues.