‘Rough sex’ consensual, jury hears

A Dunedin man says two women he met through Tinder whom he is accused of raping consented to rough sex.

After three and a-half days of evidence at his Dunedin District Court trial, Michael John Danyon Fraser (24) opted to enter the witness box yesterday, where he told the jury everything he had done with the complainants was consensual.

Counsel John Munro, in his opening, emphasised his client did not have to tell his side of the story but suggested it was "significant" he chose to do so.

Fraser faces three counts of rape, one of sexual violation by unlawful sexual connection and two of attempting to do so.

The women, who were allegedly raped just five weeks apart in January and February 2018, told the court similar stories.

Each met Fraser through the popular dating app and went to his Cargill St flat in the early morning.

They said they were slapped and choked while the defendant had sex with them, none of which they consented to.

But Fraser told a different version of events.

He described a consensual encounter with the first complainant in which there was kissing and mutual sex acts.

The defendant accepted he had lightly slapped the woman but stopped when she told him she did not like it.

Any pressure around her neck was simply his hands being placed on her collarbone and not strangulation, Fraser said.

He conceded the woman left in a hurry, but put that down to an "insensitive" comment he made about wanting to go back into town to join his friends.

After being spoken to by police about the incident, Fraser went home with another woman following a night out drinking.

He told the jury there was nothing forceful about what happened in his locked bedroom and said the complainant agreed to try rough sex with him.

Fraser said she was moaning throughout the entire evening and had she told him to stop — as she said had happened repeatedly — he would have.

Mr Munro asked him what his reaction was when he heard of the rape allegation.

"What the f***, basically," Fraser said.

Under cross-examination from Crown prosecutor Richard Smith, he denied he enjoyed seeing women scared.

He described the rough sex as "a form of dominance, I suppose".

"I just find it exciting," Fraser said.

On Wednesday the court heard from an ex-partner of the defendant who said they had engaged in consensual rough sex.

"During my sex with Michael he would choke me but I was OK with it. I didn’t care.

"It wasn’t full on ... like he’d have his hand there, it was just like a dominance thing, just was kind of normal," she said.

"I didn’t care at all. It wasn’t like he was choking me until I was dying."

The woman said she quizzed Fraser after she heard through a friend about the second complaint.

"It’s not fair that people like you like to be choked but when I do it to someone else it’s like I’m raping them or whatever," her ex-boyfriend responded.

"I was like, ‘people are different, you can’t just assume that everyone enjoys that kind of stuff, especially being slapped on the face’," she replied.

Cross examination of Fraser will continue today before the Crown and defence close their respective cases.

Judge Crosbie is expected to sum up on Monday before the jury retires to consider its verdicts.


Local trusted journalism matters - now more than ever

As the Covid-19 pandemic brings the world into uncharted waters, Star Media journalists and photographers continue to report local stories that matter everyday - yours.

For more than 152 years our journalists have provided Cantabrians with local news that can be trusted. It’s more important now than ever to keep Cantabrians connected.

As our advertising has fallen during the pandemic, support from you our reader is crucial.

You can help us continue to provide local news you can trust simply by becoming a supporter.

Become a Supporter