The Facts: Our client was a graduating university student from Thornhill who was accepted to medical school. He went downtown with a friend to celebrate and they met two young women from Ottawa who invited them back to their hotel room. Viktor, not used to alcohol, got drunk and passed out. The police woke him up after the complainant claimed that he had raped her while her friend and his friend had gone out for a walk.
The Defence Strategy: At first, Viktor did not believe that he had engaged in sex with the complainant, but because he was so drunk, he couldn’t remember anything. The police later came armed with a DNA warrant that revealed that he had indeed had sex with her. The client’s lack of memory posed a challenge, but there were other clues that provided us with leads to follow. There was another fresh DNA sample in the complainant’s underwear, which showed that she had recently had sex with someone else. We hired a private investigator who interviewed a bouncer from the club they were at; and we obtained the hotel’s security tapes which all showed that at the club and at the hotel, Viktor and the complainant were clearly very attracted to each other. A witness from the room next door described sounds consistent with consensual sexual activity. The investigator also tracked down information about the complainant, including the fact that she had recently gotten engaged (the other DNA sample!) and had a rocky relationship with the other friend who was there that night. Hence, she had a strong motivation to lie about having had consensual sex with Viktor, so that her fiance would not find out that she had been unfaithful.
The Trial: After a very successful preliminary inquiry, the trial proceeded with a jury in Newmarket. In cross-examination, the complainant’s friend, the bouncer and the witness from the hotel room next door, all contradicted the evidence of the complainant, who could not keep the lies in her evidence straight. Sensing the weakness in the criminal case, the Crown offered a plea to a lesser offence, which we refused.
The Result: The jury took only three hours to acquit Viktor of all charges. He is now a first year medical student. He doesn’t drink anymore.Back
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