MAWI client denies sexual assault of girl, 5 – The Royal Gazette | Bermuda News, Business, Sports, Events, & Community

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MAWI client denies sexual assault of girl, 5

A client of Mid Atlantic Wellness Institute was yesterday on trial for the sexual assault of a five-year-old girl.

The man, who cannot be named for legal reasons, faces two charges of sexual exploitation of a young person in an incident that unfolded on July 16 last year.

The man, represented by lawyer Ken Savoury, has denied both charges.

Prosector Robert Welling told the eight-woman four-man jury that the five-year-old girl was sexually assaulted by a man when she was playing very close to her home.

He said the child was riding her bicycle in the nearby fields when she began to lag behind from her cousin.

During that stage, he alleged that the defendant approached her and took her to a secluded area in the doorway of a laundry area.

When she was reunited with her cousin, the five-year-old appeared physically distressed and then explained what had happened, Mr Welling said.

He said over the course of the trial the jury would hear videotaped evidence from the victim herself.

He also said the victim's nine-year-old cousin who was playing with her that day and her mother who reported the incident to police would give their testimonies to the court.

DNA expert Candy Zuleger, yesterday presented what Mr Welling refered to as “the most importance evidence of this case”.

Ms Zuleger said presumptive testing of the underwear taken from the young victim were positive for the defendant's DNA.

She also said swabs taken from the child's genitals and sent to the lab in Florida, United States also showed the accused was the “major DNA donor”.

According to Ms Zuleger, the chances of the source of DNA on the underwear being anyone other than the defendant are one in five trillion for the black Bermuda population and one in four trillion for the white population.

She said it was rare for a swab to test positive for saliva DNA as the bodily fluid denigrates easily and concluded the sample was gathered quickly after the alleged assault.

Ms Zuleger said that swabs taken from the man's genitals were negative for the child's DNA.

The expert will be cross examined today by Mr Savoury, as the case continues before Chief Justice Richard Ground.

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Published March 09, 2011 at 8:38 am (Updated March 09, 2011 at 8:38 am)

MAWI client denies sexual assault of girl, 5

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