A man who ignored a woman's screams of agony as he raped her has lost his appeals against conviction and sentence. WARNING: Distressing
A man who ignored a woman's screams of agony as he raped her has lost his appeals against conviction and sentence. WARNING: Distressing

Rape pain was 'worse than childbirth’, victim reveals

Warning: Distressing content

 

A man who so brutally raped a woman with his fist that she lost two litres of blood and had to have surgery, has lost his appeals against conviction and sentence.

Damien James Kellett, then 26, and the woman, who had met on dating site Tinder, had been having consensual sex when he said "one, two, three" and performed an act of violence that caused extreme trauma to her vaginal walls.

In his Court of Appeal decision, Justice Philip Morrison said the woman, who continued to scream, experienced agonising pain and said she felt her insides "popped".

She lost two litres of blood and had two full thickness tears to her vaginal wall, which had to be surgically repaired.

"She cried and screamed from the pain, describing it as worse than childbirth, and 'it felt like my insides popped'," the judge said, describing the woman's evidence.

"She told him to 'stop it' and 'no', had her nails digging his back, was crying and trying to get him off her."

The defence had argued that the violent act occurred in one gradual movement, not two, as part of consensual sex and no harm was intended.

The court heard on the day of the offence, on their second date, the pair first had "normal sex".

The woman had previously told Kellett, a father-of-two, that she did not like rough sex.

Before the rape, the woman had objected to him putting his hands around her throat, while pushing her against a wall, attempting anal sex and hitting her on the face three times.

Justice Morrison said Kellett's statement that he was going to perform a sex act on the woman came simultaneously with the act, and she had no opportunity to respond.

Kellett was convicted, after two jury trials, of rape and unlawfully causing grievous bodily harm.

He was sentenced in July, last year, to seven years' jail for the rape and six years' jail for grievous bodily harm, to be served concurrently.

The District Court judge declared they were serious violent offences, which means Kellett will have to serve 80 per cent of the sentences before being eligible for parole.

"Your conduct was brutal, degrading, forceful, injurious and ... contemptuous, in my view, of the complainant," Judge Reid said, sentencing Kellett.

Justice Morrison said he agreed with Judge Reid's characterisation of Kellett's conduct, which he also agreed was designed to "humiliate and degrade".

Kellett appealed against the rape conviction and sought to challenge the sentence, including the serious violent offence declaration.

In a two-to-one majority decision, by Justice Morrison and Justice Debra Mullins, the appeal against conviction was dismissed and Kellett was refused leave to appeal against the sentence.

Justice David Jackson dissented, saying in his view, the appeal against the rape conviction should have been allowed and a retrial ordered.

He said the evidence raised an issue about whether the "act" was done under an honest, reasonable, but mistaken belief that the complainant consented.

Justice Jackson said the trial judge failed to direct the jury as to the excuse of mistake of fact.

He agreed with the decision to refuse leave to appeal the sentence.

*For 24-hour sexual violence support call the national hotline 1800RESPECT on 1800 737 732 or MensLine on 1800 600 636. 

Originally published as 'Pain worse than childbirth': Man loses appeal for brutal rape


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