OSLO (Reuters) - A Norwegian court has acquitted a man accused of raping a sleeping woman after he said he was also asleep at the time.
The 18-year old woman, who had gone to sleep dressed in trousers and a sweater on a sofa after a party with friends, awoke to find the 34-year-old man having sex with her. The man said he was woken by her screams for help.
"He said that he was asleep and the majority of the judges found that they could not rule out the possibility," defense lawyer Christian Riig told NRK public radio on Thursday.
The three-judge panel in the court in Inderoy, west Norway, acquitted him by a 2-1 margin because of doubts about whether he had been conscious.
Riig declined to speculate about how the man, who had been drinking, could have had sex in his sleep, apparently after undressing the woman. But he said an ex-partner of the man had testified by telephone that similar things had happened to her.
A perfectly believable explaination...as for how she came to be undressed and he came to be on the sofa...