9:20am Tuesday 16th April 2013
A JUDGE has told a jury it does not have to decide whether a man on trial for rape was sleepwalking at the time.
Maximillian Hessel, of Peat Moors, Headington, Oxford, denies committing the crime in June last year.
The 22-year-old had been drinking heavily and smoking cannabis and told the court he only remembers going to sleep and waking up with a woman shouting at him.
Sarah Gaunt, prosecuting, said forensic evidence proved sexual activity took place between Hessel and the complainant, who cannot be identified.
Part of his defence, barrister Jeannie Mackie suggested, was that he fell asleep and any contact took place while he was in a state of “automatism”.
But yesterday Judge Gordon Risius told the jury that, for legal reasons, the defence could be disregarded.
The trial continues.
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