"I did it and I have done it and I shouldn't have done it" - Stuart Olding addresses WhatsApp messages
Stuart Olding has given his testimony in Belfast.
Ulster and Ireland rugby player Stuart Olding said on Thursday he was "embarrassed" about messages he posted in a WhatsApp group, saying it was "immature boasting" to friends.
Olding, from Ardenlee Street in Belfast, has denied forcing a woman to perform oral sex on him in the bedroom of his teammate Paddy Jackson's bedroom the day after the pair returned from a Ireland rugby tour of South Africa.
The 24-year old took to the witness stand at Belfast Crown Court, where he denied forcing the wowan into any sexual activity.
Instead, he claimed she beckoned him into the room then engaged in a consensual sex act.
The complainant, who was 19 at the time, claimed she was raped from behind by Jackson whilst being forced to perform oral sex on Jackson (26). The pair deny the charges, while Jackson has been charged with and denies an additional charge of sexual assault.
Under questioning from his barrister Frank O'Donoghoe QC, Olding was asked about his version of what occurred in the bedroom of Jackson's Oakleigh Park home in the early hours of June 28th, 2016.
Olding claimed that after showing a young woman who also attended the afterparty to an upstairs room after she was sick, he walked into his friend's bedroom as he wanted to go to sleep. He said that after opening the door, he saw Jackson lying on his back, with the woman "on top of him and kissing him."
Olding said he stood at the door and turned to leave but then the woman "turned around and held out her hand, as in an invitation to stay."
When asked by O'Donoghoe "how sure are you of that?" the accused replied "100%."
He told the court and jury he closed the door and began kissing the woman on the bed. Olding said: "After we stopped kissing, I lay down on the bed with my head on the pillow. She was kneeling over me. I'm not quite sure how my jeans became undone... then oral sex started happening." He said this sexual activity lasted "between five and ten minutes."
O'Donoghoe then asked his client "did you force her in any way to perform oral sex upon you?" to which Olding replied "no, I did not force her in any way."
Olding was also asked if her remembered any "interruptions" during the incident. He said the first one was when the woman stopped giving him oral sex to ask for a condom, and the second interruption was when he asked her to take her top off.
When asked where Jackson was during all of this, he said his friend was lying on the bed.
Olding said the sex act came to an end when he ejaculated, and at that point he left the room, went to a bathroom to clean himself up, then slept in another room.
O'Donoghoe asked Olding, "Was there anything in the course of that ten-minute period that made you believe that (the woman) was not consenting to anything that was taking place in that bedroom at that time?"
Olding repied, "No, not at all. If I thought that, nothing would have started and nothing would have continued."
He was also questioned about a WhatsApp conversation he had with friends hours after the alleged sex attack.
In a group chat, Olding posted a message which said 'we are all top shaggers.' When asked by O'Donoghoe "why did you say that?" Olding replied: "I was referring to the events of the night before. It was just immature boasting to my friends."
Olding was also asked about messages between him and Jackson which referred to 'spitroasting'. He said it was a slang term for a threesome. He also wrote a message on the group which said 'it was like a merry-go-round at a carnival.'
When asked about this message, he responded: "I didn't even mean anything by that. It was said in an excited state. It's nonsense." And when O'Donoghoe asked Olding how he felt now reading those messages, he answered: "I feel very embarrassed sitting here reading them. I'm certainly not proud of talking like that, but I did it and I have done it and I shouldn't have done it."
Reporting by Ashleigh McDonald for M&M News Services.
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