Rapists are preying on drunk women like burglars on unlocked doors, says senior female judge

'Girls are perfectly entitled to drink themselves into the ground but should be aware people who are potential defendants to rape," says Judge Lindsey Kushner in her last case before retirement

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The Independent Online

Women who get drunk risk being attacked by rapists, one of Britain’s most senior female judges has warned. 

Lindsey Kushner QC said the "disinhibited" behaviour of women who have been drinking places them in danger of predators who "gravitate" towards drunken females.

She was speaking as she sentenced a man to six years in prison for raping a drunken girl he met in a Burger King branch in Manchester last year.

The case was her last before she steps down from the bench.

"We judges who see one sexual offence trial after another, have often been criticised for suggesting and putting more emphasis on what girls should and shouldn't do than on the act and the blame to be apportioned to rapists," she said. "There is absolutely no excuse and a woman can do with her body what she wants and a man will have to adjust his behaviour accordingly." 

She added: "As a woman judge I think it would be remiss of me if I didn't mention one or two things. I don't think it's wrong for a judge to beg women to take actions to protect themselves. That must not put responsibility on them rather than the perpetrator. How I see it is burglars are out there and nobody says burglars are OK but we do say 'please don't leave your back door open at night, take steps to protect yourselves'."

Judge Kushner is a mother of two who has served as a senior circuit judge since 2002. 

"Girls are perfectly entitled to drink themselves into the ground but should be aware people who are potential defendants to rape, gravitate towards girls who have been drinking," she said. "It should not be like that but it does happen and we see it time and time again. They do it because, first, a girl who is drunk is more likely to agree as they are more disinhibited even if they don't agree they are less likely to fight a man with evil intentions off.

“Even if they manage to have their way with a girl or woman with out her consent the likelihood is she will be less likely to report it because she was drunk or cannot remember what happened or feels ashamed to deal with it or, if push comes to shove a girl who has been drunk is less likely to be believed than one who is sober at the time. I beg girls and woman to have this in mind.

“They are entitled to do what they like but please be aware there are men out there who gravitate towards a woman who might be more vulnerable than others. That's my final line, in my final criminal trial, and my final sentence.”

Judge Kushner spoke after sentencing Ricardo Rodgrigues-Gomes to six years in prison after he was found guilty of having sex, along with a another man, with the 18-year-old victim on a canal bank.

The attack was filmed from a nearby flat by a witness who called the police.

The footage shows the victim saying: “No, stop. I don’t want to do it. I don’t like this, it’s not fair.”

Judge Kushner told Gomes: “It’s up to any woman to decide what she wants to do with her own body. If she wants to go out on the town and meet somebody and have sex with them with in an hour that’s up to her, it’s her privilege. But that’s not a signal for anybody to do what they like to her if she doesn’t want it.”

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