Calgary

Young men accused of gang rape thought teen girl consented: defence

Two young men accused of gang raping a Calgary teenager and videotaping it, believed she was consenting to the sexual activity, their lawyers have argued.

WARNING: Details of this story may be extremely disturbing to some readers

Timothy Fanning, left, and Adham El-Sakaan are accused of gang raping a teenager two years ago. There are two cellphone videos of what happened. (Facebook)

Two young men accused of gang raping a Calgary high school student and videotaping it believed she was consenting to the violent sexual activity, their lawyers have argued.

Timothy Fanning and Adham El-Sakaan, both 21, are on trial for sexual assault and sexual assault with a weapon. They are represented by defence lawyers Balfour Der and Joan Blumer. Closing arguments were made Thursday in the case.

The young woman cannot be identified because of a publication ban. CBC News will refer to her as Sara.

Sara left the courtroom in tears twice throughout the day. 

Another young man — who can't be named because he was 17 years old when the incident happened — previously pleaded guilty to sexual assault.

"This man should be acquitted," Der said of Fanning, arguing his client's testimony was credible while the alleged victim's was not. 

Blumer argued Sara's version of events when she testified during the trial was "improbable, illogical" and "inconsistent."

"The court has to find this is not a witness with integrity, this is not a witness with a good memory, this is not a witness who is trying to tell the truth," said Blumer.

Sara used sexually charged language after the alleged rape and consented to giving one of the accused oral sex, which Der argued shows consent. 

The defence also pointed the judge to evidence that Sara had mentioned she was considering participating in a "gang bang."

But the Crown argued that two cellphone videos — which were taken of the incident on Dec. 28, 2016, and played in court —  tell a clear story of rape.

"The heart of this case is captured in those videos," said prosecutor Pam McCluskey.

'I'm going to wreck her'

Sara can be heard whimpering and crying as the boys take turns with her. 

In one of the videos taken by two of the boys during the sexual activity, one of the three says, "I'm going to wreck her." 

The boys call Sara a "slut" and tell her to "shut the f--k up." One of the accused tells another to "punch that pussy, bro."

Sara can be heard crying and saying "no" as the boys hit her on the head, in the face, on her backside and in the genitals. 

Blumer argued that after her client heard the noes, he stopped within five seconds. 

McCluskey said none of the boys ever stopped or checked whether Sara wanted to continue. 

"[They] did not take reasonable steps to ascertain consent," said the prosecutor.

As McCluskey made her submissions, Fanning sat in the accused's box and shook his head. 

McCluskey said the attack on Sara continued "until finally [she] is crying so hard they stop."

Justice Scott Brooker will make his decision at a later date. 

About the Author

Meghan Grant

CBC Calgary reporter

Meghan Grant is the courts and crime reporter for CBC Calgary.