Saturday, January 26, 2008

Girl, 15, lied about rape

Story here

by Deborah James, Daily Post

A GIRL of 15 narrowly escaped jail yesterday for falsely claiming that her own stepfather tried to rape her.

The teenager from the Rhyl area went to a police station and claimed that her stepfather climbed on top of her while she was in bed, rubbed himself against her and said “you know you like it”.

The stepfather was wrongly accused of attempted rape and indecent assault and held in custody for four days. The charges hung over him for five months and he was about to stand trial when his stepdaughter finally admitted she had made up the story.

She was charged with perverting the course of justice.

Yesterday, the girl was given a three-year supervision order at Prestatyn youth court and must observe an 8pm to 7am curfew for three months.

Court chairman Alice Jones said the offence merited a custodial sentence but because the girl was showing so many positive signs of changing the Bench wanted to support her.

Peter Humphrey Jones, prosecuting, told the court: “An innocent man was arrested, taken into police custody, kept in custody and had proceedings hanging over him for extremely serious offences until no evidence was offered.”

Mr Jones said that last June the girl went to a police station in Manchester and claimed that while she was in bed, and her mother was out, her stepfather had climbed on top of her and rubbed up against her, telling her: “You know you like it”.

On another occasion, she alleged, he had grabbed her private parts.

The man was arrested and the evidence seemed so strong that he was charged with indecent assault and attempted rape and committed for trial at Manchester Crown Court.

In November, however, the girl’s mother told the police that the allegations were false, and when the teenager was interviewed she admitted she had lied.

“She maintained that prior to making the complaint she had been pressured by her aunt and felt she had no option but to make the complaint,” said Mr Jones.

The girl explained that she had been taking alcohol and drugs at the time and felt unwell.
The aunt told the police that she had merely supported the girl who claimed to have been sexually abused and had not persuaded her to say anything.

“I can’t believe that she has lied because she was very convincing and seemed upset,” said the aunt.

Daniel Weed, defending, said the girl had a chaotic background, becoming involved in drugs and alcohol at an early age, but since moving to North Wales had settled down.

“In the past the police were at their front door more often than the postman, but she has really turned the corner and there has been a dramatic change in her behaviour.

“She made a very foolish decision when she went to the police but didn’t realise the impact it would have,” he said.

Mr Weed said the man bore the girl no malice.