Northern Ireland news

Mother of teenage girl who claimed she was raped in Belfast park tells jury she `sensed there was something wrong'

The woman was called to give evidence at a trial at Belfast Crown Court

The mother of a teenage girl who claimed she was raped in a Belfast park has told a jury that she "sensed there was something wrong" with her daughter.

The woman was called to give evidence at a trial at Belfast Crown Court.

Paul Klandyk, from Dunvegan Street in the city, has been charged with - and denies - raping and sexually assaulting the autistic teenager in Ormeau Park on Saturday June 13 2020.

The 25-year old accused has admitted sexual activity with the girl - but claimed it was consensual.

The complainant's mother was called to the witness box today and recalled her concerns where her then 16-year-old daughter and 15-year-old friend didn't arrive home on the last bus.

When asked by Crown barrister Terence Mooney KC what she did when the girls failed to get off the bus, the woman she rang her daughter at around 10.45pm.

She said: "I knew she had been drinking because of her speech.

"I asked her where she was and she said she didn't know, then she said she was in Ormeau Park and I said 'you've missed the bus.'

"I said 'I'm coming to pick you up. I can tell you have been drinking and I'm coming to pick you up.'"

The girl's mother said she told her daughter to walk to a doctor's surgery on Ormeau Road and she'd pick her up there.

When asked by Mr Mooney what happened when she got to the pick-up point, the woman said: "I got out of the car and walked up to the girls and said 'youse are drunk, get in the car'."

She said her daughter was "unsteady on her feet ... her speech was slurred ... she was not herself".

After both girls got in the car, the woman said she could smell sick and that both girls were "whimpering".

She said: "They were crying. They were both crying before they got in the car as well.

"I kept asking my daughter what was wrong. I said 'you have been drinking, that's ok, forget about that. What's wrong?'

"I could sense there was something more wrong with the way they were behaving.

"My daughter then said she'd been attacked. I said 'what do you mean attacked?' and she said 'I was raped in the forest, in the park.'"

When asked her reaction, the woman said: "I was shocked, absolutely completely shocked."

Mr Mooney then asked what happened when she got her daughter home and she said she called the PSNI, who arrived a short time later.

The jury has already heard that after a trawl of relevant CCTV footage was viewed, Klandyk was arrested and interviewed.

He described the complainant as 'a little tipsy', and made the case she flirted with him and instigated the sexual activity which he claimed was consensual.

At hearing.


Northern Ireland news