Scotland: Gay man cleared of trying to rape woman
A Glasgow man has been cleared of trying to rape a 49-year-old woman after telling the court he is gay.
A jury took less than an hour to return a majority verdict finding William Craig, 38, not guilty of the offence.
The High Court in Livingston heard Mr Craig admitted stopping the woman as she was out waking her dogs in Livingston, West Lothian, on 31 January.
But he said he was only asking her for directions to the nearest railway station so he could get a train home to Cathcart in Glasgow.
Edinburgh Evening News reports the 38-year-old told the jury he’d only tapped her on the arm to attract her attention because she was listening to music on earphones.
When she reacted in a frightened manner he claimed he asked her: “What did you think I was going to do, drag you into the bushes and shag you?”
He claimed the “snobbish” woman and her female acquaintance had made up the allegations “to get that wee Glaswegian rat the jail”.
Mr Craig categorically denied the rape allegation telling the jury: “Why would I want to drag her into the bushes when I’m a poof? I’m gay. I’m not into women. Get me?”
Outside court he wiped away tears as he spoke of his relief at being found not guilty.
He said: “I’ve been under a huge amount of pressure because of this. My boyfriend and my pals are all affected too and have had to take time off work.
“There’s no way I would want to take a woman into the bushes for sex. I’ve been gay all of my adult life and I’m not going to change now.”