OAP, 72, ac­cused of rap­ing vul­ner­a­ble teen

The Press and Journal (North-East) - - NEWS -

Mem­bers of a jury have been asked to set their “re­pul­sion” aside when de­cid­ing whether a vol­un­teer bus driver is guilty of rap­ing a vul­ner­a­ble young woman.

Robert Day has de­nied rap­ing a woman in her late teens at Balme­die Beach on Novem­ber 24, 2016.

The 72-year-old ad­mits hav­ing sex with the al­leged vic­tim in his Skoda Oc­tavia car, in his role with a com­mu­nity bus char­ity, while tak­ing her from a psy­chi­atric ap­point­ment in Aberdeen to the Aberdeen­shire chil­dren’s home where she lived.

Pros­e­cu­tors al­lege that the woman, who has been di­ag­nosed as hav­ing learn­ing dif­fi­cul­ties, was “in­ca­pable of giv­ing con­sent, by rea­son of men­tal dis­or­der”.

But Day, who lives on Chapel­hill Place in El­lon, has en­tered a de­fence of “rea­son­able be­lief ” – in­sist­ing he un­der­stood that she was able to con­sent and “se­duced” him.

Ad­vo­cate De­pute, Stephen McCloy, led the pros­e­cu­tion case and yes­ter­day urged ju­rors at the High Court in Aberdeen to find the re­tired off­shore worker guilty of rape - and of “ab­duct­ing” the teenager by tak­ing her to the beach “against her will”.

Mr McCloy listed var­i­ous fac­tors which he claimed showed that the ac­cused was aware of the al­leged vic­tim’s “vul­ner­a­bil­ity”.

He said: “She was raped and sex­u­ally as­saulted. She was a very vul­ner­a­ble girl who re­quired a driver to keep her safe and Robert Day did not do that.”

De­fence ad­vo­cate David Mog­gach urged the jury of eight women and seven men not to al­low feel­ings about the age dif­fer­ence to in­flu­ence their de­ci­sion.

He said: “Base your ver­dict solely on the ev­i­dence.

“This is not a court of morals, what­ever you think of a 70-year-old man hav­ing sex with a woman in her late teens.

“You might find it re­pul­sive, you might find it ab­so­lutely ap­palling, but that is not a crime.”

Lord Mulholland will ad­dress the jury to­day be­fore send­ing them out to de­lib­er­ate the ver­dict.

Robert Day out­side court

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