Bristol

Girl, 17, 'feared reporting sex attack would ruin MP's aide'

Houses of Parliament
Image caption The political researcher is accused of sexually assaulting a woman in Westminster

A junior parliamentary staffer delayed reporting sexual assaults by an MP's aide because she "didn't want to ruin his life", a court has heard.

Callum Warren, 27, is accused of assaulting the girl in Westminster in 2017, when she was 17.

He was working as a researcher for Kingswood Conservative MP Chris Skidmore at the time.

Southwark Crown Court was told Mr Warren forced himself on the teenager on three occasions.

The aide is accused of first assaulting the girl in January 2017 in a ladies toilet on the Westminster estate.

The second is alleged to have happened following the Conservative Party's 2017 election win in June.

Mr Warren, from Bristol, is accused of trying to kiss the complainant as they walked through an underpass after a night celebrating the victory.

On the third occasion in July 2017, Warren followed the teenager into Mr Skidmore's office and forced her against the door to kiss her, before shoving her into a chair and pushing his hand between her legs, the jury was told.

The complainant went to the police in September 2017 after confiding in a colleague who then took the matter to the Tory whips.

'Really ashamed'

The whips recommended she make a police report but she told the court she feared no-one would believe her.

"I was just really worried about losing my job - I was really ashamed that everything had even happened."

"I just didn't want to ruin his life or get a name for myself," she added.

She said she eventually went to the police because she was unable to sleep and it was all she could think about.

Mr Warren faces two counts of sexual assault in January and June 2017, and one count of sexual assault and one of assault by penetration in July 2017.

He denies the first two allegations ever happened and says the final incident only involved kissing and was consensual.

The trial continues.

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