‘As­phyx­i­ated’ es­cort’s body had no clear mark­ings to in­di­cate rape

Court: Mur­der ac­cused an­swered ‘no com­ment’ to po­lice ques­tions

The Press and Journal (North-East) - - News - BY RE­BECCA BUCHAN

An es­cort who was al­legedly raped and mur­dered in an Aberdeen flat had no in­juries which in­di­cated she had been sex­u­ally as­saulted, a court has heard.

Jes­sica McGraa's body was dis­cov­ered naked from the waist down and ly­ing on a bed in a rented apart­ment on Union Ter­race.

A post-mortem ex­am­i­na­tion in­di­cated the call girl had died of as­phyx­i­a­tion.

Bala Chinda is on trial at the High Court in Aberdeen charged with rap­ing and mur­der­ing the 37-year-old on Fe­bru­ary 11 last year.

It is al­leged he in­flicted blunt force trauma to her head and as­phyx­i­ated her be­fore steal­ing a key and two mo­bile phones from her.

He is fur­ther ac­cused of dis­pos­ing of his own phone in an at­tempt to de­feat

“The ab­sence of any no­table in­juries did not mean she had not been raped”

the ends of jus­tice. The 26-year-old de­nies the al­le­ga­tions against him.

The court has heard that when Miss McGraa's body was ex­am­ined no ob­vi­ous marks or bruises were found in or around her pri­vate parts to in­di­cate she was raped.

How­ever, giv­ing ev­i­dence yes­ter­day, Dr Catherine White, who is an ex­pert in ex­am­in­ing vic­tims of sex­ual as­saults, said the ab­sence of any no­table in­juries did not mean Miss McGraa had not been raped.

The doc­tor told the court that she had car­ried out a study whereby 500 al­leged vic­tims of sex­ual as­sault were ex­am­ined within 48 hours of the of­fence.

From those stud­ied, doc­tors only found ob­vi­ous in­juries on 33% of those claim­ing to have been at­tacked.

She said fac­tors, like the age of the al­leged vic­tims, had to be taken into ac­count.

Dr White also said an­other study car­ried out showed that vic­tims of sex­ual as­saults who have black skin are four times less likely to dis­play in­juries than those with white.

Also giv­ing ev­i­dence yes­ter­day, De­tec­tive Sergeant Ni­cholas Searle said he was present when Chinda was in­ter­viewed at Kit­ty­brew­ster po­lice sta­tion.

He said the in­ter­view was started at 10.34pm and lasted for al­most two hours.

The court heard that dur­ing this time Chinda pro­vided “no com­ment” re­sponses to all the ques­tions he had been asked.

The trial, be­fore Beck­ett, con­tin­ues. Lord

VIC­TIM: Es­cort Jes­sica McGraa’s body was found naked from the waist down

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