Woman tells of fighting off attacker

00:48, Dec 12 2012

The victim of an alleged sexual assault has described how she fought off her attacker after a "silly" decision to accept a ride home from a stranger.

The woman, who cannot be identified for legal reasons, alleges Tony Russell Wells, 32, mechanic, of Linton, sexually violated her in 2006.

Wells is on trial in the Palmerston North District Court for two sexual violation charges, along with one charge each of raping and sexually violating another woman in 2003.

The woman told the court she had been having a drink with her boss, and went to check her bank balance.

It was then, she said, that a man in a white Honda Civic sedan pulled up at the lights in Cuba St, Palmerston North.

"He said: 'it's dark, you shouldn't be walking home. I can give you a lift'.


"Me, being so silly, took the lift.

"I was tired, it was cold and I didn't really want to walk the distance."

The man, whom the woman alleges was Wells, ignored directions before pulling into Flygers Line, just outside of Palmerston North.

"He took me down Flygers and offered me money to perform sexual services."

She told the court she tried to call emergency services on her phone, but the man took the phone off her.

She said he then tried to make her perform an indecent act, which she refused to do.

"He then forced himself on me and was trying to kiss my neck."

She told the court he performed an indecent act on her, before trying to force her to give him oral sex.

She fought back.

After that, he "snapped out of it" and drove her near her house.

She told her mother, boss and two friends she had been sexually violated, but did not make a complaint until 2010 after seeing a newspaper article about the man.

She then went to Palmerston North police to lay the complaint.

Defence lawyer Simon Hewson questioned her account of the incident, saying it was inconsistent with an earlier statement to police.

She had pushed what happened to the back of her mind, she said.

The trial, before Judge Les Atkins, continues.

The Manawatu Standard