Taxi driver cleared by jury of raping woman passenger
A cabbie accused of raping a woman has been cleared by a jury.
Prosecutors claimed Malcolm Hancock raped the woman, who was "seven out of ten" drunk, when she got into his car alone.
Jurors heard the alleged victim, who cannot be named, said she had bitHancock's private parts "although not hard" before she got out of the car.
Hancock's privates was examined and photographed during police questioning and he did not have bite marks.
The 55-year-old cabbie, of Low House Farm Cottage, East Boldon, said it was the alleged victim who was "sexually aggressive towards him" and denied rape during a trial at Newcastle Crown Court.
Jurors have now found him not guilty.
Hancock told detectives during interview: "I didn't rape anyone, I would never do that."
The married dad told jurors from the witness box he had been a cabbie for almost 20 years when he picked the woman up.
Hancock said the woman had been drinking "but I wouldn't say she was drunk" and was not slurring her words.
He added: "She was asking me if I wanted my leg over".He told the court it was the woman who had groped him and started performing a sex act on him when stopped to drop her off.
But he added: "As soon as it started I stopped her.
"I stopped her because as soon as it started the thought of my wife hit me, straight in the head."
Hancock said he was "disgusted" with himself that he allowed anything to happen, even though it was so brief.
He added: "Before she got out of the car she said 'can I have my money back' and I said 'no, you can't have your money back, there's no reason to give you your money back' then she got out of the car.
Hancock, who was traced and questioned within hours of the alleged attack, told jurors he "definitely did not" force the woman to perform the sex act.
The court was told the woman accepted her memory of what happened was hazy and added: "I just know what happened shouldn't have happened."