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Noose Marks On Neck Described At Trial

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Christchurch, Oct 15 NZPA - Red criss-cross lines were found on the neck of a woman who says Liam James Reid raped and violated her while he held a rope noose around her neck, the High Court at Christchurch was told today.

Kathy Powell, a Dunedin general practitioner and member of Doctors for Sexual Abuse Care, gave evidence of examining the woman -- then a 21-year-old student -- last November, after the attack in bushes beside a carpark in central Dunedin.

The victim has identified 36-year-old Reid as the man who attacked her, but the defence has denied he committed the crime, or was the man who raped and murdered Emma Agnew in Christchurch nine days before.

Dr Powell described the bruising, lacerations, marks on neck from both manual and noose strangulation, and genital injuries suffered by the victim.

She said she had never seen the types of lacerations and amount of swelling in the genital area before, and that some tests could not be carried out because of the swelling and pain.

Dr Powell said she saw red criss-cross lines on the victim's neck. They were more obvious on the right side, but also occurred on the left. The skin was not broken anywhere.

"I have not seen anything like it before," she said.

Forensic pathologist Martin Sage told the court that the marks on the woman's neck were probably caused by the rope and the woman's own efforts to pull it downwards.

It could make someone black out in a few seconds and cause death in three to five minutes. It was a serious threat to her life.

He noted that she had difficulty speaking and swallowing and said the loss of memory -- she did not know how she got away after squeezing and twisting her attacker's testicles -- may have been caused by asphyxia.

During her evidence yesterday, the victim told of being repeatedly raped and punched in the genital area at least twice.

A flatmate of the victim has given evidence of the scene when her friend arrived home.

She heard the woman talking and crying in the hallway with a third flatmate.

She then went to the woman's room and found her hysterically crying and holding herself, distressed and upset.

She had matted hair, and was covered with dirt, twigs and blood.

Her face and neck were swollen -- the court has been told a noose was tightened around her neck -- and there was blood on her face and hair. Her eye was swelling.

The flatmate said she smelt disgusting and vomited into a bucket. There was blood over the duvet where she had been sitting on the bed.

She dialled 111 and met the police when they arrived.

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