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Boyfriend Accused Of Sexually Assaulting Girlfriend Arraigned

SANTA MARINO - A local Santa Marino man, Joshua Martin, 27, was arraigned yesterday at the Los Angeles County Superior Court in Santa Marino.  Martin is accused of sexually assaulting his former girlfriend in 500 block of Venice on the weekend of July 7, 2012. 

As has been well-documented in local and national media, Martin was arrested just hours after the alleged incident on a Sunday afternoon.   According to the indictment, Martin had been spending the night at the victim’s apartment with her approval.  It is alleged that they had had a romantic relationship but that the victim’s affections towards Martin had been waning in recent weeks.  She had not given express consent to any sexual activity the morning in question and was planning on ending the relationship sometime soon after she woke up.

While the victim was still sleeping Martin allegedly went underneath the bed coverings and placed his mouth on the victim’s genitals.

Also according to the indictment, when the victim awoke she was able to fend off the alleged assailant and telephone the police.  By the time the police arrived, Martin already had returned to his own apartment.  He was arrested there.

The case has garnered much media attention because of its unusual circumstances.  Generally, prosecutors do not pursue nonviolent sexual advances between committed partners.  Because the victim, however, intended to end the relationship in the morning some legal scholars believe the relationship was terminated once that was the victim's intent.

“If she knew she was going to dump him that night, the relationship was over.”

Assistant District Attorney Rita Sharpe-McAllister said that all instances of nonconsensual sex should be prosecuted.  “There should never be sexual contact without consent,” she said.  “Lack of consent renders the act illegal and we must prosecute all violations.”

Attorney for the victim, Gloria Allred, said that her client intends to pursue “every available civil remedy” against Martin.  “No man should assume there is consent while a woman is asleep,” said Ms. Allred.

“If she knew she was going to dump him that night, the relationship was over,” said feminist legal scholar Margaret C. Hoyt of Santa Marino College.  “It could have been the local garbage man going down on her,” she said.

“What bothers me is that he could have asked for her consent to the activity the night before,” said Tina Summersly, 24, of Venice.  “Any good relationship has good communication so it is no wonder that she dumped him.”

Martin has no prior record and is believed to work in the telecommunications customer service industry.  If convicted, he could be sentenced to as much as 12 years in prison.  He is now free on $100,000 bail.