Trigger Warning: Man Admits to Raping Victim’s Body, Denies Murder

Again, I’m issuing a trigger warning as strongly as I can. I’ve written about a hell of a lot of disturbing, disgusting cases of rape and gender violence. And this easily ranks among the most repulsive.

. . .

A man is in court for the 2005 rape and murder of a young model. I just discovered the case this morning, and reading through the back stories has me just about physically ill. His defense? That yes, he raped her corpse, but that doesn’t mean he killed her.

The man accused of killing teenager Sally Anne Bowman has told a court he regrets having sex with her corpse.

Mark Dixie claimed he did not realise she was dead until after he had sex with her body, the Old Bailey heard.

Mr Dixie, 37, denies murdering the 18-year-old in Croydon, south London, during a sex attack, in September 2005.

Giving evidence, he said: “I don’t know what went through my mind. I took full advantage of someone and I should not have done it.”

[. . .]

Prosecutors allege Mr Dixie stabbed her seven times and raped her as she was dead or lay dying.

But Mr Dixie has told jurors that he found Miss Bowman’s body after a drink and drugs binge.

He told the court: “I have gone over it during the last three years. I don’t know what went through my mind.

“All I saw was a pair of legs… shirt put down to the waist and I took advantage of her.

Anthony Glass, QC, defending, asked if he thought she was dead or unconscious.

Mr Dixie said: “I would not have expected to see anyone dead in that street.

“I thought she might have passed out or fallen over.”

But he admitted there was no reaction during the sex attack, even when he bit Miss Bowman.

Anthony Glass, QC, asked Mr Dixie, “Did you, in fact, realise she was dead?”

To which he responded: “After a while. I panicked. I stood up. I looked at her. I did not know what to do.”

Mr Dixie described how he then placed cement dust and concrete from a nearby skip on Miss Bowman’s body to conceal his DNA.

Let’s be clear, because apparently the BBC in reporting the story, the defense and the accused are not: you don’t “have sex” with a corpse. Nor do you “have sex” with a passed out woman in a driveway while she lays in a pool of blood. That is what we call rape — and very, very sick.

And though I don’t expect defense attorneys to actually understand and respect the nature of rape, this is about as bad as it gets:

Commenting on the charge of murdering Miss Bowman, Anthony Glass QC, defending, said: “It is, you may think, a very unattractive defence.

“He did not know she was dead until intercourse was concluded.

“Even though you may think his conduct is disgusting, he allowed his lust to get the better of him.”

That’s right. He didn’t murder the woman, he just raped what he thought was an unconscious, blood-covered body laying in the street. Because he couldn’t control his “lust.” Isn’t that what rape is about, after all? Lust? I mean, what man can resist a stabbed, bleeding, dead woman?

And though the prosecutor apparently wants to make my head explode by also calling the rape “sex,” he otherwise sums things up nicely:

Prosecutor Brian Altman said: “The defendant confesses that he had sex with Sally Anne and that he had sex with her after her death.”

The court heard Mr Dixie had said he had been drinking, took drugs and had “taken advantage of the situation”.

Mr Altman said: “That astonishingly is his defence. It is born out of desperation.”

Other than the fact that the defense is utterly ludicrous by its very nature, there’s a technical problem with Dixie’s claim that he wasn’t responsible for the stabbing. Like the fact that ten years ago, another woman was brutally stabbed and raped, but lived to tell the tale. And the DNA found in her underwear was recently matched to Dixie’s.

Jurors heard the woman, who was 19 at the time, lost consciousness when she was stabbed, and awoke to find her clothes removed and that the intruder had raped her.

The prosecution told the court that the woman, who cannot be named for legal reasons, was treated in hospital for eight stab wounds, including injuries to the neck and back.

The court also heard that a DNA sample from her underwear was matched last year to Mark Dixie.

During cross-examination, the woman denied being a prostitute at the time because she was short of money.

Well that’s good to know. Sure, the woman was stabbed eight times and raped inside her own home. And sure, the accused’s DNA was found in her underwear. But was the woman a prostitute?!

No, she wasn’t. Whew, that’s a relief. Because if she had been a prostitute, it would have apparently nullified the fact that she was the victim of a rape and attempted murder. Or, maybe, the defense attorney is trying to suggest that this is how Dixie’s DNA ended up in the woman’s underwear: she was a prostitute, he had sex with her earlier, and then she was later stabbed. I’d say that Dixie has some pretty shitty luck, constantly “having sex” with women in extremely close proximity to the seven or eight stab wounds they suffered, all by coincidence.

Oh, and just one other tiny detail: when he was 17, he apparently committed an “indecent assault” on another young woman.

Let’s just say that even if Dixie did not brutally murder Bowman, he still deserves to be locked up for life due to his history of repeated and extreme sexual violence, including his admission that he raped what he believed to be an “unconscious” woman lying on the pavement and called it “taking advantage.” But I also think that one would have to be as thickheaded as thickheaded comes to believe that he is not also responsible for the murder — a painful, slow murder that involved raping the victim as she bled to death or so shortly after she died that an autopsy couldn’t determine the difference.

If I believed in the death penalty, this guy would be a perfect candidate. Since I don’t, and since it’s not practiced in the UK, all I can say is dear god, throw away the key.

Also, why the hell does a crime involving sexual assault have to get this fucking grisly and involve a woman who was young and beautiful before the media will actually bother to report on it?

On second thought, don’t answer that.

0 thoughts on “Trigger Warning: Man Admits to Raping Victim’s Body, Denies Murder

  1. Cara Post author

    *shudders* I remember that case. I can only assume that you don’t mean funny “haha,” but funny “I’m seriously considering never reading the news again.”

  2. Amy

    Don’t worry, it’s the latter. I’ve had my daily dose of disturbing. I was hoping that “Oh no, I didn’t kill her, I merely committed necrophilia!” was not something that came up often…

  3. Cara Post author

    Wouldn’t it be nice to live in a world where we didn’t have to “hope” for such things, let alone find out that the hoping did no good?

  4. brandann

    count me in the latter “funny” as well…


    just can’t figure out what to say here…there are so many things wrong w/ this whole disgusting story!

    i hope you have the stomach to keep us updated…and now i am going to have to start reading BBC again…

  5. Roy

    I was about to mention that, too, Amy. The first time I heard that that was Taylor’s defense at the EMU case, my jaw dropped open.

    And that it hung up a jury?

  6. Violet

    “He said he became suspicious when the teenager did not react to bites on her face and body.”

    We don’t check for a pulse? I would understand if someone was really drunk and drugged and saw the body and walked away without getting help, but this is just the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard. Thank god the other victim’s testimony was allowed in. And that case happened ten thousand miles away, while he happened to be in the area? I’m not buying it.

  7. Pingback: Consent « Jem’s Lair

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