Ipswich man denies raping drunk woman at 18th birthday party

ipswich crown court

The trial is taking place at Ipswich Crown Court - Credit: Charlotte Bond

An Ipswich man accused of raping a drunk woman at an 18th birthday party at a house in the town put his hand over her mouth to muffle her cries for help, it has been alleged.

The alleged victim, who is in her 20s, began drinking at lunchtime on the day of the party and got so drunk that she was sick and was unable to stand up or walk unaided, Ipswich Crown Court was told.

She was taken to an upstairs bedroom and Keiffer Sewell, who was a guest at the party, took it upon himself to look after her and make sure she was ok, said Roger Smith, prosecuting.

“He gave the impression to everyone that he was being a gentleman and making sure she was safe but the Crown say he had a rather more sinister intention and when the coast was clear and no one else was about he began to undress her,” said Mr Smith.

He claimed that when the woman called out for her brother, Sewell put his hand and the duvet over her mouth so the sound was muffled and he had then allegedly raped her.

“Throughout the rape she was calling out and saying no. She wasn’t willing and she was so intoxicated she was incapable of giving consent,” said Mr Smith.

He said that at one stage someone had looked in the room to check on the woman and had thought it was inappropriate that Sewell was in the room and suggested he went back to the party.

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After he left the woman told friends and members of her family she’d been raped and Sewell was asked to leave the party.

The police were called and Sewell’s full DNA profile was subsequently found on internal swabs taken from the victim, said Mr Smith. 

Sewell, 22, has denied raping the woman four years ago in August 2017 when he was 19.

Following his arrest Sewell, of Hadleigh Road, Ipswich, denied raping the victim.

He told police he and the woman had kissed while they were in the garden at the party but said he hadn’t pursued it because she was drunk.

He later said that a sex toy had been thrown around at the party and his DNA may have been transferred to the woman’s hand after he caught it and threw it back to her.

The trial continues.