Woman tells High Court she was raped in bed holding her baby

Dunfermline Sheriff Court
Dunfermline Sheriff Court

A woman wept in court as she described being raped as she lay in bed with her baby girl.

Her daughter, then almost one, had been conceived as a result of a previous rape by Neil Ireland, the woman told the High Court in Dunfermline.

Ireland (39) of Methil, is on trial accused of sex offences committed in various parts of Fife between 2008 and last year.

The woman, who claims to have been raped six times by Ireland, said she had also tried to hang herself after one of these incidents.

They are alleged to have happened in Cupar, Methil, Leven and Dysart.

The woman described how she had fallen asleep with her daughter lying over her arm, while Ireland was to be sleeping on a sofa in the living room.

She was woken by Ireland coming into her bed. “I tried to get up but he held me down,” the woman told the court.

“He tried to pull down my pyjama bottoms and I told him to stop. He told me I better be quiet so I didn’t wake up my daughter.”

“What happened next?” asked advocate depute Keith O’Mahony.

“He went on to rape me. I asked him to stop more than once,” said the witness.

“Did he stop?”

“No and then my daughter woke up.”

“Did he stop then?” asked Mr O’Mahony.

“No,” answered the woman.

The woman also said she was raped during her pregnancy and as a result had to go to hospital because of bleeding.

She told the court that after a previous alleged rape at Ireland’s then home she barricaded herself in the bedroom and tried to hang herself using the cord of her housecoat but he dismantled the door and stopped her.

The woman said Ireland would lock her in his house when he went to work and he would frequently physically assault her, leaving her with bruises.

It is alleged that Ireland sexually assaulted five women, including ten offences of rape.

Ireland denies a total of ten charges. The trial before Lord Uist continues.