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Cop charged with raping teen in Darwin ‘father figure’

by Anthony L. Gonzalez

A police officer accused of raping a teenager has abused his position as a father figure to restrain his alleged victim, a Northern Territory court has heard.

Patrick Carson, 37 at the time of the alleged crime, has pleaded not guilty to raping the woman, then 19, in the Supreme Court, twice in Darwin in 2020.

Prosecutor Marty Aust told the jury that evidence would show that the married police officer was abusing a socially immature young woman who had only recently arrived in town.

“Under the guise of being a supportive and caring father figure, he allowed a situation in which she trusted him,” he said during his opening address.

Aust said an intense relationship developed, and the woman “felt loved and important and special, to the extent that he could control aspects of her life and take advantage of her sexually”.Cop charged with raping teen in Darwin 'father figure'

The couple met at the exercise group.

The court heard that the couple met in February at an exercise group and began training together two to three times a week.

As their relationship developed, the duo began communicating through an encrypted messaging platform to allegedly hide it from his wife.

“Over time, the context of messages sent…less about training and more about friendship and relationship development, off-topic flirtatious perhaps,” Mr. Aust said.

It would have resulted in the couple being alone in May in the house Carson shared with his wife and children.

Massaged each other on the terrace

The woman accused the officer of raping her after the duo massaged each other on his terrace.

“Then he kissed her back and asked if that was okay… She didn’t know what to do,” Mr. Aust said.

“She thought about getting up and leaving, but she felt unable to because she knew the suspect had locked the gates…and had previously told her he had guns.”

The second alleged attack occurred six weeks later on a couch at a mutual friend’s home.

The woman tried to escape.

Mr. Aust said Carson had violently touched the woman, saying “he was sorry he didn’t finish her last time”.

“She said what you are doing, and the accused told her to be quiet, and he pushed and rubbed roughly,” he said.

“She got upset and said words like ‘please stop, I don’t want this,’ and he said he didn’t care, and she got scared.”

Aust said the woman tried to escape, but Carson told her to “be a good girl and keep quiet”.

“She told him he was old enough to be her father and begged him,” he said.

“He ignored her and became even more oppressive.”

Accusations of a ‘distortion of the truth.’

A phone call from Carson’s wife ended the alleged attack.

The court heard that the woman did not immediately report the attacks because the man was a police officer.

“She was upset by these sexual assaults but accepted his apology,” Mr. Aust said.

Carson’s attorney, Mary Chalmers, told the jury that there was no dispute that the couple massaged each other but that there was no sexual intercourse and that the charges were “gross exaggerations” and a “distortion of the truth.”

“There are important issues regarding credibility and trustworthiness,” she said.

The trial continues in a closed court for evidence from the woman.

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