NEW LONDON, Conn. – A toxicologist testified Wednesday that the chief accuser in a Coast Guard Academy court-martial would have been nearly comatose if she drank as much wine as she says she had the night of an alleged rape by a fellow cadet.
The accuser, now an officer, said she remembers little about the night with Webster Smith, her on-again, off-again boyfriend.
Smith, 22, of Houston is the first cadet to be court-martialed in the academy's history. He has pleaded not guilty to rape, sodomy, extortion and assault charges that stem from allegations by the former girlfriend and three other female cadets.
The accuser testified Tuesday that she drank as much as three liters of wine at a house party last summer in Annapolis, Md., where she says the date rape took place.
Cynthia Morris-Kukoski, a lieutenant commander in the Naval Reserve who is also a clinical pharmacist and toxicologist, testified that a person of the accuser's build who drank that much in just a few hours would be bordering on comatose.
Prosecutors want to show the woman could not have consented to sex because she was too drunk.
Defense attorneys believe the effects of alcohol have been overstated and plan to argue the woman would have been dead if she drank as much as she said. They also argue that sex between the two was always consensual.
Prosecutors have sought to cast Smith as a manipulative, controlling senior who preyed on vulnerable women.