A 27-year-old Alexandria woman testified yesterday that she was bound, beaten, and raped by a Vietnam War-decorated Navy officer after she resisted his advances during a date this past summer.
The officer, Lt. Cmdr. Christopher W. Gilluly, a 32-year-old pilot, pleaded innocent to the woman's charges of rape, sodomy, abduction and assault and battery as his trial opened in Alexandria Circuit Court. Gilluly, who flew 175 combat missions during the Vietnam conflict, contended through his lawyers that the woman had made up protions of her testimony and had submitted voluntarily to his advances.
Gilluly, who won 12 medals for his air combat missions, is currently a cost analyst at the Navy Annex in Arlington.If convicted of rape, he could face life imprisonment under Virginia law.
Yesterday his accuser told the court how she met the officer on a blind date last summer, two days before the alleged attack. On the night of July 7, the two attended a military social function at Fort McNair in Washington and then went to Giluly's apartment at the Watergate Landmark complex in Alexandria, she said.
After she resisted his advances, the woman testified that Gilluly became "perturbed" and forced her into a bedroom. There, she said, she was tied to a bed and beaten with a riding crop and wooden college fraternity paddle before being sexually assaulted.
Under cross-examination, the woman said she had once fantasized being tied during sexual intercours. "But now it turns my stomach," she said.
After the alleged attack, th woman said she persuaded Gilluly to untie her. She then escaped from the apartment clothed only in Gilluly's bathrobe, and ran barefoot down 16 flights fo steps, she said. Once outside, the woman said she sought the aid of a passer-by who drove her home. She contacted the police later that day.
"I was afraid of Mr. Gilluly," the woman told the courtroom. "I thought of putting it out of my mind, just forgetting about it. The only rape cases I've seen are on TV where the victim is in more danger than the rapist."
The defense is expected to begin presenting its case today.