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Witness claims cadet forced oral sex on her

In the first court-martial case in Coast Guard Academy history, a witness testified Wednesday that a cadet previously  forced oral sex on her when she was drunk.
Coast Guard Academy cadet Webster Smith is facing charges of rape, sodomy, extortion and assault in his court-martial, the first of its kind in the 130-year history of the academy.Fred Beckham / AP file
/ Source: The Associated Press

A witness testified Wednesday that a Coast Guard Academy cadet charged with rape forcibly performed oral sex on her, providing the most damaging testimony in the trial so far.

Webster 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 his on-again, off-again girlfriend and three other female cadets.

The rape charge involves the girlfriend, who testified Tuesday that she could not remember having sex with Smith one night last year because she drank about two large bottles of wine.

‘No, Webster, no’
Wednesday’s testimony was from a friend and classmate of Smith’s who said she went to a party with him and got sick.

Because she had thrown up on herself, Smith made her remove her pants before getting into his car, the woman testified. Sitting beside her, he allegedly told her he was considering reporting her to academy officers, a statement prosecutors said amounted to extortion. He then performed oral sex on her, said the woman, who is now an officer.

“I was telling him ‘No, Webster, no,”’ the woman said. “I was telling him I didn’t want this.”

“He was a friend. It never crossed my mind that this would happen,” she said.

A third accuser testified Wednesday that Smith pinned her to the wall and kissed her at a party last spring. Asked whether she wanted him to kiss her, she said no.

But the defense suggested Smith thought the two had a budding relationship. The woman acknowledged she and Smith hung out regularly, ate dinner together and sometimes talked on the phone 10 to 12 times a day.

She said they remained friends after the incident, which she reported months later, leading to the assault charge.

Defense: Alcohol effects overstated
Earlier Wednesday, a toxicologist testified that the girlfriend, Smith’s chief accuser, would have been nearly comatose if she drank as much wine as she said. The accuser, who also is now an officer, said she remembers little about the night of the alleged rape.

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 that 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.