An Exeter fresher was allegedly sexually assaulted in halls by 28-year-old man

He climbed on top of her and ‘pinned her down’ as they watched Breaking Bad

An Exeter University first-year claims to have been assaulted in her room by a man from Bishopsteignton, having invited him back after a night out with a group of friends.

The student had agreed to let the 28-year-old stay the night, but ran out of the room when he touched her while they were watching Breaking Bad on her laptop.

The Exeter Crown Court heard that the two groups of friends had met at Club Rococo in April last year, and that the defendant and his friends were invited back to the accommodation where they sat in the kitchen and ate pizza.

There had been “no hint of a romantic relationship” between them prior to her allowing him to stay overnight.

Rococo - Exeter

Club Rococo

Mr Nigel Wraith, prosecuting, told the court that the defendant was staying in her room “because there was nowhere else for him to sleep and it was standard procedure to have friends sleeping in rooms without indicating any sexual interaction.

“They went to the room where she put Breaking Bad on her lap top and they sat on the bed watching it. He sat behind her with an arm over her and she remembers thinking that was a bit odd.

“There had been no suggestion at all during the evening of there being any romance or intimacy between the two.

“After five minutes or so things went a bit further and he started to feel her up. She had a physical reaction and recoiled into a foetal position.

“It must have been obvious his attentions were not welcome and she told him ‘no, leave me alone’.”

The complainant was initially alerted to his behaviour as he lay behind her and started to touch her, at which point she told him to stop. He then climbed on top of her and “pinned her down”.

He then placed his hand inside her shorts, causing her to recoil into foetal position. When he moved his hand – possibly to loosen his trousers, the court heard – the student used the opportunity to flee her room.

Mr Wraith said:”She was no longer pinned down and made a break for it out of the bed and away from him. She grabbed her phone and room key card and went downstairs”, before climbing into a kitchen window and sleeping in a friend’s room.

Having spoken to friends about the incident the following day, she spoke to the police.

The defendant denies sexual assault and claims the sexual activity was consensual. The trial continues.