5 real Victorian scenarios from the last 5 years: Should these be considered rape?
1. A woman falls asleep in her sitting room after watching television with friends; her nightdress has ridden up around her hips. She is seen, through her window, by a man whom she had never met before, who was walking down her street after having taken ecstasy and consumed beer. He let himself in through the unlocked front door of her house, and while she is asleep performed oral sex (including penetration) on her – when she woke up he digitally penetrated her vagina.
2. A homeless and drug addicted woman blacks out, awakening in a city park to find a man beating and raping her. She yells out ‘I’m being raped’ several times and is heard by a passerby, who later tells the court it takes 30 seconds for the defendant to respond to his shouts to get off the the victim. Medical evidence of her injuries support a sexual assault hypothesis.
3. A university student at the pub with a group of friends accepted several drinks from a male friend, which unbeknownst to her were doubles and triples. The student became extremely intoxicated and at some point in the evening blacked out. She woke up and discovered the male friend and another friend having sex with her.
4. A sailor at a naval base went back to her room on her own after a party and fell asleep, later to wake up and find a male sailor having sex with her. She said that she had thought of him “like a brother” and would never have agreed to have sex with him. He argued that she had consented and that he stopped having sex with her after she fell asleep.
5. Three (white) men pick up a 12 year old Aboriginal girl. She was given at least four cans of beer in a space of 30 minutes and became very drunk. All three men proceed to have sex with her on the bonnet of the car. She alleges that this was without her consent.
In all of these cases, the rapists were either not convicted, or convicted without punishment.