Business analyst convicted of raping woman he met on dating app

Victim says man raped her after turning up at her house, and stole her phone on his way out

 

A Meath business analyst has been convicted of raping a woman he met on the online dating app Badoo.

Martin Sherlock (30), of Athlumney Wood, Navan, had pleaded not guilty at the Central Criminal Court to raping the woman at her Dublin home on August 14th, 2015.

The jury of eight men and four women returned its verdict on day four of the trial following over five hours of deliberations. Mr Justice Patrick McCarthy thanked the jurors for their service, and remanded Sherlock on continuing bail to June 18th.

The woman said the man raped her after turning up at her house and stole her phone on his way out.

During the trial the now 27-year-old woman told the jury that she had contacted another man on Badoo and had sex with him because Sherlock had failed to confirm their scheduled meet-up that night.

She told Conor Devally SC, prosecuting, that Sherlock then messaged her after the other man had left. She said she agreed to meet Sherlock when he said it was just for a chat. She said when he arrived she told him that they couldn’t have sex because he had no condom.

She told the jury that she and Sherlock started kissing and touching in the bedroom but then she started to feel strange when the activity escalated to oral sex on her bed.They interchanged between oral and penetrative sex until she became sore and uncomfortable and began repeating “no” and “stop”.

The woman said Sherlock didn’t listen even after she told him that he should go, and he carried on until he ejaculated. She said she hadn’t wanted to perform oral sex with him while on her bed, but she let it happen.

She told Mr Devally that Sherlock refused her request to come to a GP for the morning-after pill, saying he had no money.

On his way out Sherlock returned back upstairs to retrieve his phone charger and took her phone as well.When she discovered it missing, she dialled the number from her house phone. She told the court it rang twice and then was unreachable.

Deleted

Shortly after the incident the woman went onto the Badoo website but found Sherlock’s account had been deleted. She said she then rang her friend who advised her to contact the Garda.

She agreed with Blaise O’Carroll SC, defending, that she did not have a packet of condoms at her house but had arranged to meet his client earlier that night. She said that she made it clear that there would be no sex without a condom.

“I definitely told [Sherlock] if you have no condom, no sex”, she said.

Sherlock told the jury that he and the complainant matched on the app and it was “quickly clear” that they were both on the same wavelength about meeting up for sex.

He told Mr O’Carroll that he received a text from her about bringing a condom while he was driving to her house but he told her he didn’t have one when he arrived.

He said she “seemed disappointed” about this, but there was “no negative response” from her when they began sexual activity.

The jury heard that gardaí arrested Sherlock after a sting operation was set up to meet with a person selling the woman’s stolen phone on DoneDeal.ie

Garda Rossa Smith told the jury that the DoneDeal.ie seller’s contact number matched that of Sherlock from his WhatsApp messages to the woman.

The garda said Sherlock seemed panicked when approached by colleagues purporting to be interested in buying the stolen phone. He said Sherlock told him on arrest “I know she said no but we’d already started”.