The Chronicle (Toowoomba, Queensland)
Rape trial set to conclude
June 14, 2019
THE Toowoomba District Court jury in the trial of a former Toowoomba psychiatrist accused of raping a female patient is expected to retire to consider a verdict today.
The 48-year-old man has pleaded not guilty to three counts of rape of the same woman patient which the Crown claims occurred in 2013.
The court has heard the relationship between the pair went beyond that of doctor/patient and the couple had engaged in a consensual sexual affair in 2013.
However, the Crown case was that despite her crying and telling her psychiatrist “no”, he had sex with her in his office during an appointment in September 2013.
The other two alleged instances occurred when the pair was in a motel room in Toowoomba and involved the use of a sex toy.
Closing the Crown case, Crown prosecutor Shontelle Petrie said the evidence relied upon at the trial came from the four-and-a-half hour pre-recorded evidence of the complainant woman which was played to the court and by a number of admissions agreed to by the Crown and defence.
In her closing address, Ms Petrie said the four-year delay in making the rape complaint to police had arisen from the woman feeling “ashamed and embarrassed” that she had been in a sexual relationship with her doctor and that she had become afraid of him.
However, defence barrister Angus Edwards argued that the trial was not about a doctor raping a patient but about the complainant being scorned after her doctor dumped her when his wife found out about the affair.
“Yes, he had an affair with a patient and he should not have done that,” Mr Edwards told the jury.
“They fell in love and had an affair, it’s a story as old as time.
“Doctors are not gods, they are normal human beings.”
Mr Edwards said after his client ended the relationship with the complainant she was hurt and that pain had turned to anger, then bitterness and obsession.
“She did everything to destroy (the accused),” he submitted.
“She stalked his life.”
The evidence of rape came from just one source, the complainant, Mr Edwards said.
He pointed to the delay of four years in making the complaint, the inconsistencies in the complainant’s versions of events, her deteriorating mental health over time and the “complete lack of independent support of what she says” as reasons the jury would not find her evidence credible.
Mr Edwards will complete his closing address today.
The jury of seven men and five women will retire to consider a verdict after Judge Jennifer Rosengren sums up the case.