Actress says emails she sent to Ghomeshi don't change his actions

WARNING: Some content may be disturbing to readers

The lawyer for a Canadian actress who has accused Jian Ghomeshi of sexual assault said that racy emails her client sent to the former CBC radio host do not change his actions.

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Lucy DeCoutere, who appeared on the TV series "Trailer Park Boys," faced another round of intense grilling at a Toronto courthouse on Friday as a Crown witness in the sexual assault trial.

Friday's cross-examination focused on a series of emails and a racy photo she sent the former CBC Radio host months after he allegedly choked and slapped her while on a date in 2003.

Speaking to reporters outside the courthouse, DeCoutere's lawyer Gillian Hnatiw said her client was not the one on trial.

"This is, and remains, a trial about Mr. Ghomeshi's conduct. What Lucy did, and how she felt in the aftermath of the assault does not change that essential fact," Hnatiw said.

"It is telling that the defence did not accuse her of dishonesty regarding the objective facts of the assault itself."

Ghomeshi is standing trial for four counts of sexual assault and one count of overcome resistance by choking. He has pleaded not guilty to all counts, and has always denied any wrongdoing. He claims his sexual relations were consensual.

On the stand at Ghomeshi's trial on Friday, DeCoutere was repeatedly questioned about whether she was trying to become romantically involved with him.

She repeatedly said that she was not, despite sending several emails asking to meet up with him, including one that contained a photo of her simulating a sexual act. The emails were sent after Ghomeshi allegedly choked her then slapped her three times in his bedroom in July 2013.

DeCoutere said Thursday she had consented to kissing Ghomeshi, but not the violence.

On Friday, Ghomeshi's lawyer Marie Henein showed the court the correspondence between Ghomeshi and DeCoutere in the days, months and years after the alleged assault took place.

In an email DeCoutere sent Ghomeshi a day after the alleged assault in his bedroom, she states: "Jian getting to know you is literally changing my mind. You challenge me and point to stuff that has not been pulled out in a very long time."

The email later states: "You kicked my ass last night and that makes me want to f**k your brains out tonight."

DeCoutere acknowledged that she had sent the email, but said she didn't remember writing it.

"I totally forgot about it. I guess I wanted to forget about it," she said.

She also said the incident left her confused, and added that regardless of her emails to him, Ghomeshi did not have her consent to choke or slap her.

In another email, sent to Ghomeshi days after the alleged assault, DeCoutere wrote: "I think you are magic and would love to see you."

On the witness stand, the actress responded that the email didn't change the circumstances around the alleged assault incident, and repeated again that he didn't have consent to slap or choke her.

Ghomeshi's lawyer also produced photos during cross-examination. On Thursday, Henein showed the court photos of DeCoutere "cuddling" with Ghomeshi at a barbecue they both attended the weekend after the alleged assault.

On Friday, the actress was shown a photo that she sent to Ghomeshi in 2005, showing her simulating a sexual act. DeCoutere said she sent the photo, but that her "intent was never to tantalize him."

She stated that it didn’t mean that Ghomeshi had not assaulted her, and that she had sent what she thought was a funny photo to other people as well.

DeCoutere was also shown another email, sent a year after the alleged assault, where she wrote to Ghomeshi that she would "beat the c**p" out of him if he didn't meet up with her in Banff, Alta.

Earlier this week, DeCoutere told the court that they did meet in Banff, and the pair sang the Britney Spears song "Hit Me Baby One More Time" at karaoke.

When Henein suggested that DeCoutere was trying to see Ghomeshi, rather than him trying to see her, DeCoutere says she was attempting to make things less awkward between them.

The sentiment echoed a statement she'd made Thursday, when she said she didn't want to alienate herself from the entertainment industry.

On Thursday, Henein also accused DeCoutere of withholding information that indicated she’s been dishonest about her and Ghomeshi’s relationship. Henein said DeCoutere omitted important details when speaking with the police, and asked her why she had not told police about some emails exchanged with Ghomeshi.

She said the actress only disclosed them to the Crown on Thursday, after the trial had begun.

"I didn’t understand the importance of after-contact incidents," DeCoutere said.

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WARNING: Some content may be disturbing to readers


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