Toowoomba man jailed for raping teen in her sleep

A MAN who raped a teenage woman as she slept drunk at his Toowoomba home has been jailed.

Jake Raymond Pascoe, 22, had denied the charge of rape, but after a three-day trial a Toowoomba District Court jury found him guilty.

The court heard the then 17-year-old girl had befriended Pascoe who she asked to look out for her at a gathering of friends at Pascoe's Toowoomba home one night in May last year.

The girl got drunk and, feeling sick, she had gone to lie down on Pascoe's bed where she fell asleep.

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She woke later to find she had no pants on and signs that someone had had sex with her, the court heard.

In the girl's police statement, she had recalled Pascoe lying beside her on the bed before she went to sleep.

She told police Pascoe had asked her if she wanted to "snuggle" but she had said no and that she was ill, Crown prosecutor Kathleen Millican told the court.

Though friends, the pair was not in a relationship, Ms Millican said.

After the verdict, the now 18-year-old victim read aloud her victim impact statement to the court in which she spoke of the devastating effect the incident had had on her.

The slight, diminutive teenager said she had trusted males and had made friends with men but she now found it difficult to trust anyone.

She had difficulty eating and sleeping at night, she said.

"Most days I don't even want to leave my home let alone my bed," she said.

She told the court she had been a friendly and bubbly person prior to the incident but now had difficulty in forming relationships with people.

Ms Millican said the victim had been young and drunk and that Pascoe knew that at the time.

The girl had looked to Pascoe to look after her but he had breached her trust and taken advantage of her, she said.

"A sleeping woman is not fair game and a person asleep cannot consent," Ms Millican submitted.

It would have been "terrifying to wake up in that situation", she said.

Adding to the victim's trauma was that Pascoe had had unprotected sex with her.

 

Pascoe's barrister Robbie Davies said his client had no previous criminal history at all and he had worked as a disability support worker helping those less fortunate.

His client's prospects of rehabilitation were "excellent", Mr Davies submitted.

Judge Michael Rackemann said Pascoe had shown no remorse and described his actions that night as "deplorable".

Pascoe's actions in raping a teenage girl who had asked him to look out for her had been a "grave breach of that trust", he said.

However, taking into account his otherwise clean record and good prospects for rehabilitation, Judge Rackemann sentenced Pascoe to five years in jail but ordered the term be suspended after he has served two-and-half years, the remainder of the term to hang over his head for five years.



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