Jury re-hears evidence in masseur’s trial
A JURY in the trial of a kinesiologist charged with sexually assaulting a female patient will continue considering its verdict tomorrow, after re-hearing large parts of the evidence.
Daniel John Liddel, 54, is accused of indecently touching the patient, 33, during a massage in April 2018 at his Bracken Ridge Natural Therapies clinic, on Brisbane's northside.
Liddel, who gave evidence during the trial, has pleaded not guilty to sexual assault, and strongly denied doing anything inappropriate during a therapeutic treatment session.
The jury retired to consider its verdict at 11.13am, on the third day of the Brisbane District Court trial before Judge Michael Byrne.
The court heard the woman, who cannot be named for legal reasons, met Liddel at a holistic therapy festival called Mind Body Spirit in 2017.
She began seeing him for kinesiology treatment - an alternative holistic therapy - after suffering an injury five years earlier, the court heard.
The woman told the court Liddel told her "a hug was all that was needed" after she offered to pay for one consultation and treatment.
The woman told the court during a third therapeutic treatment session in April 2018, Liddel pulled her pants and underpants down below her bottom, without asking.
She also told the court that without asking her he rubbed her body, within one to two and one to three centimetres on either side of her vagina, for 45 seconds to a minute.
"I offered to pay and he said all he needed was a hug in return," the woman said.
The woman said she never gave permission for Liddel to touch her in that area and she said, "I felt very violated by what had happened."
She said she regretted not saying anything to Liddel that day, and it had been a very traumatic event that followed her every day.
The woman's boyfriend gave evidence that the next day she told him that Liddel had pulled down her pants and underwear to below her buttocks.
He said she lay on their bed and showed him where "Danny" had been working on her, indicating it was "between her vagina and her bum", less than a couple of centimetres away.
In August 2018 the woman went to see Liddel for another treatment session and secretly recorded their conversation.
She asked Liddel about him previously pulling her pants and underpants all the way down, and he said he apologised if that was the case, but he did not remember doing it.
The next day Liddel sent the woman an email saying, "I'm very upset you're upset."
He said he could not remember pulling her pants down as far as she said, and he had been working on her protruded pelvis.
Liddel said in the email: "I'm devastated you believe I was trying to do something wrong."
Giving evidence, Liddel said he would not pull a patient's pants down below the bottom.
He said he was "100 per cent sure" he had not touched the patient where she said he did.
"I never removed her pants and underwear and I did nothing sexual," Liddel said under cross-examination by Crown prosecutor regarding the woman's treatment in April 2018.
Judge Byrne told jurors in order to find Liddel guilty they had to be satisfied beyond reasonable doubt that Liddel had unlawfully and indecently assaulted the woman.
They also had to be satisfied that he did both acts with the intention of sexual gratification or that his actions involved a sexual connotation.
Late today the jurors asked to re-hear all the evidence of the female complainant and all of the defendant's Liddel's evidence.
Recordings of that evidence will be played to the jury in the courtroom tomorrow morning.
*For 24-hour sexual violence support call the national hotline 1800RESPECT on 1800 737 732 or MensLine on 1800 600 636.