Picture: Free-Photos/Pixabay
Picture: Free-Photos/Pixabay

Sleepwalker accused of sexually assaulting friend's partner

By CHRIS BROOKE Time of article published Aug 16, 2019

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London - A  man who suffers from a rare sleep disorder tried to have sex with his friend’s girlfriend after walking into their bedroom, a jury heard on Thursday.

Dale Kelly, 21, allegedly sexually assaulted the woman, who screamed when she realised what was happening.

He had gone to bed with "sex in his mind" after using dating app Tinder shortly before falling asleep, York Crown Court was told. It followed a drunken night out when Kelly had taken condoms with him because he intended "to pull".

The jury heard Kelly suffers from the sleep disorder parasomnia, which can involve sleepwalking. He also experiences sexsomnia, where sexual activity takes place during sleep, it was claimed.

Kelly, of Dalton-le-Dale, County Durham, denies sexual assault. His lawyers claim he was asleep at the time and not in control of what he was doing. The court heard Kelly, two friends and the woman had been on a night out and returned to a house in Tadcaster, North Yorkshire, in 2017.

They went to bed at around 4am, with the couple sharing a bed on another floor. The victim’s boyfriend told the jury he was woken by his girlfriend shouting his name and asking: "What the f*** is he doing in our bed?" 

She claimed "He tried to rape me". Kelly then got out of the bed and said "I thought I was with Levi" – a reference to a woman he had started seeing. The boyfriend said the woman was "distressed" and "in bits".

The court also heard from a female friend of Kelly’s who told the jury he twice sexually touched her when she was asleep as they shared a bed.

She said after the first occasion: "I was angry and pushed him off. He was really apologetic and he said he was sorry and he didn’t mean to."

The witness said she was "absolutely sure" he knew what he was doing. After the second occasion a year later, she texted him: "I find it disgusting what you did to me while I was asleep." Another text read: "Please make sure you have consent with other girls."

Expert neurologist Neil Munro told the court Kelly suffered from parasomnia, which can lead to sleepwalking and sleep-sex.

He said the condition was caused by parts of the brain being awake while others slept. He explained: "The part of the brain that is asleep is what we need to be human. It is the part that makes us decent human beings.

"The ancients were right when they said there is a beast in all of us that arises in sleep." Mr Munro said a likely scenario was that Kelly had experienced a "target parasomnia", where he involuntarily carried out the act of initiating sex.

The case continues.

Daily Mail

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