Rape Victim should have been "grateful for the attention"

// 19 May 2007

A defence barrister is today under pressure after comments made in court. Shellagh Davies said of the 16 year old gang rape victim (where the rape was videoed on the 13 year old attackers mobile phones) that because she was overweight she would have been “glad of the attention”. Ms Davies, who is defending the youngest attacker claimed that the girl consented “maybe to gain affection” – because we all know rape is just a sign that he loves you.

Shellagh Davies, the barrister Shellagh Davies, the Barrister with the dubious views on rape.

She went on to day that:

one of the girls had been overweight and had “slimmed down a lot” since the alleged attack in South-East London on November 23 last year. The barrister said in her closing speech: “She was 12st 6lb – not quite the swan she may turn into. She may well have been glad of the attention.”From This Is London

Ms Davies went on to blame the fact that girls wear “stomach revlealing outfits” (how dare they, a stomach you say!) and skinny hipster jeans and that this was a culture where girls were overly sexualised. Of course she handily forgot that her defendant was 13 years at the time of the attack and maybe she’s have been on more solid ground talking about the over-sexualisation of boys.

The defendants, all from the Catford area, variously deny a 12-count indictment including robbery, rape, attempted rape and sexual assault. All three defendants deny robbing the girls.The first alleged attacker, now 14, further denies two counts of rape and one of attempted rape.The second alleged rapist, still 13, further denies two counts of rape and one of assault by penetration. The third, also now 14, of Eltham, further denies one count of rape, one sexual assault and one assault by penetration of the first victim and one count of rape in relation to the second victim.”From This is London

The London Paper message boards have an interesting discussion about the comments. Responses vary from “this is appalling” to “this is courageous”.

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