Acquittal in Provincial Court Case: Understanding Consensual Relations in Sexual Assault Accusation

Acquittal in Provincial Court Case: Understanding Consensual Relations in Sexual Assault Accusation

The fourth section of the Provincial Court of Pontevedra has acquitted an accused of sexually assaulting two minors upon understanding that the relations were consensual. The two girls were players in a basketball club of which the man was part between 2012 and 2016, first as a youth player and then as assistant coach. He was also accused of abusing a minor to whom he gave guitar lessons, between the same years. The Prosecutor’s Office requested a sentence of 21 years and 8 months in prison.

With respect to the events relating to one of the complainants, which occurred from the time she turned 14 until the beginning of 2016, the court highlights that the evidence allows it to conclude that the accused, born in 1995, “knew perfectly” the age of the minor, with whom he had sexual relations. However, he explains that he cannot conclude “that he knew that having sexual relations, fully consensual with her and lawful until July 1, 2015, would be criminal after that date since he was under 16 years of age.”

For this reason, he considers that it has not been proven that “he knew the value of the action he committed with the minor and the inappropriateness of the conduct, and with it the appreciation of the invincible error.” Furthermore, it emphasizes that “all sexual relations were maintained voluntarily”, while ruling out “the existence in the minor of any circumstance that determines any vice of consent due to prevalence, which requires a situation of superiority that places the victim in a state or circumstances such that their formally given consent cannot be valued as a free exercise of their sexual self-determination.”

The sentence adds that “the parties’ own statements rule out this situation of superiority, because although it is true that the accused was the second coach of the basketball club in which the minor played, the accused relates, without contradicting himself, that She only took a couple of training sessions for the team in which the minor played and two games,” the magistrates highlight in their resolution.

They add that “the complainant does not even make any reference to his use of such status as a coach.” In the ruling he emphasizes that it is the victim “who tries to obtain and obtains the accused’s telephone number and who decides to establish communication with him, congratulating him on his birthday and arranging subsequent appointments, and who decides to end the relationship after meeting a boy.” that he liked it”.

Regarding the other complainant, born in 1997, the Chamber indicates that, from March 2013 to May 2016, “she maintained a relationship with the accused, and during the course of the relationship, in which there were periods of breakups, they had sexual relations that were not forced or without their consent.” The minor explained at the trial, according to the ruling, that she began a relationship with the accused, who arrived at the basketball club in 2012 and with whom she coincided in training, at the end of 2013, and that the accused then did not He was a coach. She, according to the sentence, was 16 years old; and he 18.

The Court explains that, in application of the at first in doubt for the defendant, must issue an acquittal sentence, since it understands that “the reality of the non-consensual relations” has not been proven and indicates that there is no evidence to prove that the accused “was in a position of superiority with respect to the victim, of close age and with similar concerns and similar physical appearance”, as well as that “the test carried out does not show any physical or psychological disproportion or asymmetry between the two”. Furthermore, it highlights that there is no evidence that the complainant “suffered from post-traumatic stress that required therapeutic treatment as a consequence of these events.”

The Court also affirms in the resolution that it has not been proven that the accused, on an undetermined date in 2016, on two occasions and in the course of some guitar lessons, “had touched the back to the buttocks of a minor”, who was 13 years old.

2024-04-05 14:51:39
#basketball #coach #acquitted #sexual #assault #minors #relationships #consensual


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