Man admits date rape after online contact

January 11, 2016 | By More
File image. © Andrew Bardwell

File image. © Andrew Bardwell

A 27-year-old man is in custody awaiting sentence after admitting date rape at his home in Christchurch after meeting a woman online.

Christchurch District Court Judge David Saunders said imprisonment was the inevitable sentence for Chester Grant Gibson when he is sentenced in the Christchurch District Court on February 10.

Defence counsel Phillip Allan said Gibson had written a letter of apology to the woman. The letter will be given to the woman and a victim impact statement will be prepared ahead of sentencing. She will also be asked if she is willing to meet Gibson for a restorative justice conference.

Judge Saunders read Gibson a first strike warning under the system that imposes heavier penalties on repeat offenders, after Gibson had admitted the charge of sexually violating the woman by rape in an incident on October 3.

Crown prosecutor Stephen Burdes said the two had met through an online dating website.

They met for the first time on October 2 when the woman visited Gibson at his home to watch a movie and have some drinks. There was no discussion or indication about intended sexual contact.

Gibson was mildly intoxicated after drinking a bottle of red wine before she arrived. The two had drinks and smoked cigarettes outside.

After midnight, they lay down on Gibson’s bed and spooned and cuddled.

During the evening, the woman had taken a prescribed Tramadol tablet to treat pain for an unrelated medical issue.

When she fell asleep, Gibson removed the cycling shorts she was wearing. “She did not assist him or reciprocate his sexual advances at all as she was asleep. She did not say anything to him and her hands were not touching the defendant in any way,” Mr Burdes said.

Gibson told police he then raped her for about 30 seconds before deciding that what he was doing was wrong, and stopping. He went to sleep.

The woman woke in the morning feeling sore and suspected that there may have been sexual activity.

She collected her belongings and left in a taxi.

He denied in an exchange of text messages that they had done anything more than spooning, but when he was interviewed he admitted what had happened. He said she should have realised that the woman was asleep and not consenting. He was remorseful.

Gibson has only minor traffic convictions on his record.

 

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