Woman alleges attempt to rape


LAWYERS for the defence and prosecution yesterday agreed that statements to police made by an 81-year-old woman could be read to the jury at Belfast Crown Court.

Patrick Samuel Cross (27), of Moneyslane Road, Ballyward, Co Down, denies charges of attempted rape and assault with intent to rape.

The alleged attack occurred shortly after midnight on May 28th, 1995, after the woman was allegedly wakened by a person opening the door of her bedroom. The woman told police that after the person had got on top of her on the bed she had tried to shove him away.

"The first thing he did was put some injection or other in my right arm. It felt, like a needle and it was very sore, she went on.

"The man tried to have sexual intercourse with me but I was not aware of my clothing being interfered with. Then there was some sort of instrument between my legs. I felt it going into me. It was an awful thing, an awful thing altogether. I could not describe the pain. If it lasted any longer it would have finished me," the statement continued.

The woman said she honestly believed the man was going to rape her, but she could not feel anything because she was sore from what he had done. She had prayed aloud continuously and begged the man to leave her alone.

She said she had also offered him all the money she had in the house. "He was a dirty man, there was an unwashed smell. The breath of him was awful, an old stinking, dirty smell, and there was drink on him too.

She said that, when she asked the man if he was an escaped prisoner, he said: "No, I am not human. I am a mental lunatic." The woman added that as the man left she heard the clock strike one o'clock.

"I was terrified. I honestly thought the man was going to finish me off. Between the injection in my arm and the struggle, I did not think I was going to survive it but God was on my side. I kept thinking I would have to keep it to myself or I would be scandalised. I just could not believe such a thing could happen to me. I have no idea who could have done it."

The trial continues.