Dylan Robert Tuhura
Supreme Court decision here (pdf)
Manawatu Standard article 4th February 2009
A man who continue to denies invading a home and raping a young woman who was comatose after drinking was sent to prison for 10 years yesterday. Dylan George Tuhura, 21, was sentenced in the Palmerston North District Court after he was found guilty by a jury of rape and unlawful sexual connection in November. He did not know his victim - who was in court yesterday - when he entered her Palmerston North home and took advantage of her while she slept on October 13-14, 2007. The intoxicated woman had been put to bed by her flatmates while the rest of the household carried on drinking in town, the court heard.
She woke to find Tuhura on top of her in what was a "predatory" attack and home invasion, Crown prosecutor Evan McCaughan said. She fell asleep soon after and only realised the extent of what had happened when she woke about two hours later naked from the waist down. An examination and DNA evidence identified the offender as Tuhura, who lived nearby her home and had even told police he had seen nothing during questioning of neighbours following the attack. He still refused to admit to the offending or show any empathy or remorse, claiming it was consensual, Mr McCaughan said. Defence lawyer Steve Gill told Judge Les Atkins that he took exception to the term home invasion, as it was "highly emotive".
Tuhura did not accept the jury's verdict, but understood he was facing a long term in prison, he said. His client was a young man with talents, including being a national fishing champion, he said. His family, who took up one side of the courtroom, would offer significant support on his release - including a girlfriend he had been seeing since before the incident, Mr Gill said. Judge Atkins said Tuhura had "come in off the street to someone's house and violated someone who was defenceless".
Dylan George Tuhura
(This was a media error at the time)
Date of Birth
Home invasion and rape of a Palmerston North woman in October 2007
Sentenced to ten years in February 2009
Appealed his conviction twice, both times unsuccessfully
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OFFENCES / CONVICTIONS
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