Exactly a week after a teenager was charged with raping a random woman in an underground carpark, a co-accused youth has appeared in the same court on identical offences.
Last week Alcino Soares (18) of Braeside, Dungannon was charged with rape, sexual assault and twice aiding and abetting an unknown male (now the co-accused youth) to rape.
Today (Friday) the youth, who cannot be identified because of his age and whom police believe was the “instigator” of the attack, appeared by video-link with his hands clasped and apparently praying while the case details were disclosed.
A detective constable told Dungannon Magistrates’ Court all charges could be connected.
The complainant reported being raped by two unknown males on September 9, after being out with friends.
She described the males approach and walk her – one on either side – to an empty underground carpark where she was taken to a rear corner and raped by one male while the other, “watched and laughed”.
CCTV footage showed the youth with his arm around the complainant’s waist before placing her against a pillar while Soares, allegedly “paced up and down, apparently keeping a look out”.
The court heard how “he laughed on a number of occasions whilst the youth appeared to be raping the injured party. At some points she was completely limp and may have been unconscious. She was unable to hold up her head and appeared ragdoll-like”.
She stumbled away, but Soares is accused of pulling down her lower clothing before allegedly raping her.
The youth reappeared and took an image of the ongoing rape on his phone.
According to the police, Soares walked away leaving the complainant lying on the ground, slumped over on her left-hand side.
The youth got the complainant to her feet, before subjecting her to another alleged sexual assault.
On September 23 police received reports of Soares following women and filming them on his phone.
Bodyworn footage from this incident was compared with the carpark CCTV and Soares was identified and arrested.
After caution he replied: “I didn’t rape anyone. No way man. That wasn’t me.”
During interview he denied rape insisting all sexual activity was consensual and the complainant was “50/50 drunk” and “wanted it”.
Bail was opposed due to “the predatory nature of how these two males exploited a young female which is supported by CCTV, showing each kept watch for the other. We believe the defendant presents a high risk to the community, specifically young females.”
Soares was refused bail and remanded in custody.
In respect of the youth the detective also “strongly opposed bail” and noted he is neither in education, nor employment, at this time.
While it was conceded he handed himself in “this was three weeks after the incident and police had been to his address on two occasions. We believe he was the instigator of this attack and CCTV shows the predatory nature of both defendants and their exploitation of a young female. The details are sensitive and distressing and may create tension in the Dungannon area.”
The detective confirmed during interview the youth raised the issue of consent and described “walking hand-in-hand” with the complainant.
The defence urged Deputy District Judge Sean O’Hare to release the youth back to his family home into parental care.
It was accepted he is not in employment or education because “he is a carer for his younger siblings while his parents are at work”.
Judge O’Hare agreed to grant bail with strict conditions including no contact with the complainant, the co-accused or any witnesses.
There is also a curfew from 8pm to 7am, surrender of passport and signing three times per week with police.
The case was adjourned for mention later this month.