Army major raped drunk female captain after Burns night supper, court martial hears

Telegraph reporters
·2 min read
Bulford Military Court, in Wiltshire
Bulford Military Court, in Wiltshire

A British Army major raped a female captain who got so drunk during a Burns night supper that she had to be put to bed early, a court martial heard.

The woman was allegedly horrified when she woke up naked next to Major Gregor Beaton with "absolutely no memory" of what had happened.

She had been "flirting" with another soldier throughout the evening and at first thought it was him but when she saw it was Beaton, who she barely knew, she panicked.

The court heard the officer, who cannot be named for legal reasons, then suddenly had a "flashback" of someone "dragging her hips from behind".

She woke Beaton, of the 14th Regiment, Royal Artillery, but he denied that anything sexual had taken place.

The court heard that he claimed the woman had wandered drunkenly into his dorm and he had simply taken her back to her room where they chatted before he fell asleep in her bed.

Although he said he was "99 per cent sure" nothing had happened, the woman requested a medical examination later that day. That found Beaton's DNA inside her, and an investigation was launched.

Bulford Military Court, in Wiltshire, heard that earlier on during the "lively" evening, a female major had put the alleged victim to bed, dressing her in a pair of tartan pyjamas and a pale T-shirt.

But when she woke, the captain, who had been drinking red wine, Jägermeister, prosecco and whiskey throughout the evening, was naked.

When she said she confronted him and begged him to tell her the truth, he allegedly told her she was wearing a blue nightie when they went to bed.

In an interview five days after the alleged assault, she said: "I was crying and I said: 'Please, please, please just tell me what happened.'

"He said we were just chatting and that's all, nothing happened. I was really panicked and upset and said: 'Listen, if we slept together, just tell me – I can handle it'. I'm not on any form of contraception, just tell me."

She said that later that day Beaton came into her room and asked her if she wanted him to take her into town to get the morning after pill. It was then that she decided to have the examination.

Prosecuting, William Peters told the hearing: "At the Burns night dinner she got very drunk and had to be put to bed. She had no sexual interest in the defendant whatsoever… she was falling down drunk."

Mr Peters told the court that the doctor who had carried out the examination of the woman said the DNA found indicated that sexual intercourse was "extremely" likely to have taken place.

Major Beaton denies a single charge of rape.

The three-day trial continues.