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  1. ITV Report

Jury in schoolboy Workington "rape" trial retires to consider verdicts

Carlisle Crown Court Photo: ITV Border

Jurors in the trial of four schoolboys accused of raping a 15-year-old girl in Workington have retired to consider their verdicts.

The boys, all aged under 16 and from west Cumbria, have each pleaded not guilty to two rape charges. They also each deny a further sexual assault allegation.

It is alleged they carried out a "brutal sexual attack" on the girl in a muddy field on the evening of January 3 last year.

The prosecution alleges that a "pack mentality" took over and that the boys took "turns to rape the complainant", who had been drinking cider and did not know them.

During the trial at Carlisle Crown Court, the jury has heard how witnesses reported seeing a "devastated and hysterical girl" after the incident. Jurors also heard of lies told by boys in police interviews and also during a previous trial.

However, the boys claim that all sexual activity that evening was with the girl's "full and complete consent".

It was said she approached the boys and asked them to go with her on a walk which ended at the field. She was also said to have asked "does anyone want sex?".

One boy said in evidence: "I had no doubt she was consenting." Another had stated in a police interview: "We all had sex with her. We had consent. That was it, really."

On day 11 of the trial today, Monday 22 January, the final three closing speeches were delivered by barristers before Judge James Adkin summed up the evidence.

This afternoon, Judge Adkin then invited the eight women and four men of the jury to retire and begin their deliberations.