A jury deliberated nearly three hours in Alexandria Circuit Court yesterday but failed to reach a verdict in the case of a decorated Navy pilot accused of abducting, beating and sexually assaulting a 27-year-old alexandria woman last summer. Deliberations will resume today.
The prosecutor stressed the woman's testimony in his closing arguments and referred the jurors to photographs of bruises and other injuries she said she suffered at the hands of the defendant, Lt. Cmdr. Christopher Gilluly, a 32-year-old Navy pilot who saw combat in Vietnam. "The photographs speak for themselves," said Acting Commonweatlh's Attorney John E. Kloch.
Defense attorney Stephen A. Armstrong attacked the woman's testimony and asserted that there are "49 reasons for doubt" in the case. The charges against Gillyly, Armstrong declared, are "unbelievable, career-destroying, reputation ruining."
Gilluly is charged with rape, sodomy, abduction and assault and battery. He could receive a life sentence if convicted of rape.
The jury has heard two days of conflicting testimony, with the woman saying she was tied to a bed and brutalized and Gilluly acknowledging that he tied and beat her but claiming he did so with her consent as part of a sexual encounter. Gilluly denied all the charges against him.
Porsecutor Kloch attacked the defense claim that the woman accused Gilluly because she felt guilty about participating in sexual activity in the predawn hours of July 8 following a dinner-dance.
"What possible motivation could she have?" Kloch asked. "It defies logic that she would dream up the whole thing. Her body was violated. She took appropriate steps to see that person prosecuted."
The woman had gone voluntarily to Gilluly's apartment, but Kloch said, "if there were any person you'd think you could trust ...on a blind date, it would be someone like Lt. Mdr. Gilluly."
Defense attorney Armstrong, angrily gesturing and stabbing the air with his fist, argued that the woman was intoxicated, her clothes were not torn and she had "flipped out."
"Your lips say no no, but I see yes yes in your eyes" is how Armstrong described the woman's claim that she resisted Gilluly's sexual advances.
The woman, sitting in the third row in the courtroom, wept softly during Armstrong's statement.
The defense also challenge testimony of a physician and a nurse who examined the woman several hours after the alleged assault. The medical evidence for sexual intercourse "was zero," Armstrong said.