Policewoman accused of lying about rape by colleague

The 29-year-old man is on trial this month.
The 29-year-old man is on trial this month. Photo credit: RNZ/Anneke Smith

Anneke Smith writing for RNZ

A policewoman who says she was raped by a colleague has been accused of lying.

In the Auckland District Court this month, a 29-year-old man is on trial after pleading not guilty to sexual violation and indecent assault.

He is accused groping the woman during a drunken night with colleagues at a Kerikeri motel and later raping her as she slept.

The pair were part of a large group of police officers sent to Northland to work during Waitangi commemorations.

On Monday morning, the man's lawyer Paul Borich QC replayed CCTV clips that show the woman and defendant interacting that night.

The woman has told the jury the man groped her in a sexual advance she rejected and later raped her as she slept in her motel room.

Borich said the pair engaged in sexual activity in a "prearranged hook up" the complainant regretted and lied to cover up.

CCTV footage shows them touching and joking around with one another both before and after the first alleged assault.

The woman repeatedly rejected Borich's assertion she had flirted with the man that night or paid him any special attention.

She has told the court the "banter" she had with the man was typical of her personality, having grown up joking around with her siblings.

The woman also rejected Borich's suggestion she sat outside her unit with another officer for an hour before going to bed to wait for the man.

She has told the court she couldn't remember their last interaction that night, where she ran across the courtyard to speak to him at the end of the night.

Borich put to her she was now using intoxication and fatigue to explain why she couldn't remember parts of the night that made her story less credible.

"It was potentially a combination [of alcohol or lack of sleep] or potentially a combination of later being sexually violated and being traumatised by that incident.

"That's something I was focused on, not the peripheral stuff that was of no real significance to me," she said.

Borich accused her of lying about the alleged assaults.

Borich: "The CCTV bears out the real facts and this story of 'just banter' has been constructed by you to explain stuff that's not banter."

Complainant: "I would say that's incorrect."

Borich: "The footage shows an extreme level of focus and interest between you and [my client]."

Complainant: "Like I said, I thought [the defendant] was nice and up until the first incident I had no indication of anything sexualised or along those lines. The first time I was aware of his intentions with myself was in that backroom and that's when I made it extremely clear what my position was both verbally and physically."

The defendant was refused name suppression by Judge Evangelos Thomas but his identity remains secret on appeal.

A trial before Judge Thomas and a jury of six women and six men is set down for two weeks.


If you have witnessed or experienced sexual harassment or assault and would like to speak to someone, you could call the HELP support service.