Man accused of sexual assault at prom party begins trial

By  | 

FAIRBANKS, Alaska The trial for a man accused of sexual assault at a high school prom in 2018 started yesterday.

Andrew Gaines is charged with three counts of second degree sexual assault, one count of third degree sexual assault, and one count of harassment. Gaines and the complaining witness were at a party after their senior prom in 2018 when the alleged incident occurred. Photo Credit: John Dougherty/KTVF

Andrew Gaines is charged with three counts of second degree sexual assault, one count of third degree sexual assault, and one count of harassment. Gaines and the complaining witness were at a party after their senior prom in 2018 when the alleged incident occurred.

According to the prosecution, the complaining witness was extremely intoxicated and incapacitated when Gaines engaged in sexual contact. Prosecutors say she had no memory of the event but woke up without any pants on.

"I want you to consider the evidence of all the other people," said Assistant District Attorney David Buettner. "That's your job, that will show that {censored} was incapacitated and that any reasonable person would know that she was incapacitated and that she was not someone you should have sex with."

Defense attorney Amy Welch countered these claims saying the complaining witness gave Gaines alcohol so she could have sex with him.

"She wasn't incapacitated, she had a plan, and every step along the way is consistent with her representations to Andrew that he was going to get drunk and laid that night," Welch said.

Welch also claims the complaining witness only made the accusations after her friends said she was raped.

Jurors began hearing from witnesses today and the trial is expected to last for two weeks.