'Sexsomniac' who sexually assaulted friend's girlfriend in his sleep ordered to warn those he lives with about his rare condition

Dale Kelly, 21, was found not guilty as he suffered from sexsomnia, a condition characterized by an individual engaging in sexual acts while they are asleep


                            'Sexsomniac' who sexually assaulted friend's girlfriend in his sleep ordered to warn those he lives with about his rare condition

 

A 21-year-old from Durham County's Dalton-le-Dale who was found not guilty of sexual assault by reason of insanity in August after trying to have sex with his friend's girlfriend has been instructed to comply with a sexual harm prevention order for five years.

Dale Kelly had climbed into the bed that his friend and girlfriend shared after a night out and tried to have penetrative sex with her. He claimed to have been woken by her screams. He fled the house immediately but was arrested shortly after. 

The jury, however, found him not guilty as his actions demonstrated sexsomnia—a condition characterized by an individual engaging in sexual acts while they are asleep.

While the jury decided that he had indeed committed the accused offense, they found that he could not be held responsible for his actions, owing to his condition, which is categorized under sleep disorder parasomnia. This includes any unusual behavior during sleep, which generally involves walking or talking, but in rare cases, eating. Sexsomnia also falls under this umbrella. 

On the night of April 17, 2017, Kelly had been out drinking in Leeds and speaking to women on Tinder before he slept. He then sleepwalked into his friend's bedroom, which was on the second floor of his house in Tadcaster, North Yorkshire. According to the Daily Mail, the prosecutors explained that his victim, who had gone to bed with her boyfriend that night, woke up to Kelly trying to have penetrative sex with her.

Kelly fleed the house after being woken up by her screams, and shortly after, texted a friend saying, "I promise right now I have no f****** clue what's going on. I'm still wanting to wake up and for this to be in dreamland."

He has also claimed that he had imagined the woman he was having sex to be the woman he was dating. 

Judge Simon Hickey, who presided over the case at York Crown Court, has ruled that Kelly must warn the people that he stays with about his rare condition or face prison. He has also been ordered a five-year sexual harm prevention order, which bans him from contacting his victim until 2024. 

"I judge that you do pose a real threat to the female victim and to any person who may be sleeping in the same household as you, because as yet you have yet to undergo treatment," said Judge Kelly, adding, "If you breach my order the penalties are severe—you could go to prison for up to five years."

The judge ordered Kelly to undergo a two-year supervision order, which would involve him undergoing an alcohol awareness course and an "adapted thinking skills program" that targets the three areas reportedly worsens his condition—poor sleep hygiene, alcohol and stress.

Giving details of the program he will undergo, the judge said it was important that it targets alcohol awareness, sleep hygiene and stress, saying: "As a young man, these factors in my judgment could easily arise again."

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