Alleged victim in U.S. prep school rape trial 'traumatized'

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Girl Allegedly Raped at School Breaks Down in Court: 'I Was Traumatized'

A teenager broke down in tears under intense questioning on Thursday about charges she was raped last year by a popular classmate at a New Hampshire prep school in a trial that has put a harsh spotlight on the elite institution's traditions.

"I was raped. I was violated in so many ways," the teen said during the third day of 19-year-old Owen Labrie's trial on charges including raping a person under the age of 16, the legal age of consent in New Hampshire.

Central to the trial has been a long-standing tradition among students at St. Paul's School known as "senior salute": an invitation from graduating seniors to younger students to get together, often for sexual purposes.

Images of the New Hampshire prep school trial:

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Alleged victim in U.S. prep school rape trial 'traumatized'
Former St. Paul's School student Owen Labrie raises his hand as he is sworn-in prior to testifying in his trial at Merrimack Superior Court in Concord, N.H., Wednesday, Aug. 26, 2015. Labrie is charged with raping a 15-year-old freshman as part of Senior Salute, in which seniors try to romance and have intercourse with underclassmen before leaving the prestigious school in Concord. The defense contends the two had consensual sexual contact but not intercourse. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa, Pool)
While the jury still deliberates, former St. Paul's School student Owen Labrie, left, leaves the Merrimack Superior Court at the end of day with security in tow Thursday, Aug. 27, 2015, in Concord, N.H. Labrie is charged with raping a 15-year-old freshman as part of Senior Salute, in which seniors try to romance and have intercourse with underclassmen before leaving the prestigious St. Paul's School in Concord. (AP Photo/Cheryl Senter, Pool)
Owen Labrie looks around the courtroom during his trial, in Merrimack County Superior Court, Tuesday, Aug. 18, 2015, in Concord, N.H. During opening statements, prosecutors said Labrie raped a 15-year-old freshman as part of the "Senior Salute," a practice of sexual conquest at the prestigious St. Paul's School in Concord. (AP Photo/Jim Cole, Pool)
Recent St. Paul's School graduate Owen Labrie, right, stands with one of his lawyers, J.W. Carney, as jurors view the school grounds, Tuesday, Aug. 18, 2015, in Concord, N.H. Labrie is charged with raping a 15-year-old freshman as part of the "Senior Salute," a practice of sexual conquest at the prestigious St. Paul's School in Concord. (AP Photo/Jim Cole, Pool)
The entrance to the elite St. Paul’s School is seen Friday Aug. 14, 2015 in Concord, N.H., Monday, Aug. 17, 2015, Owen Labrie, a former student, goes on trial Monday, Aug. 17, 2015, for taking part in a practice at the school known as “Senior Salute” where graduating boys try to take the virginity of younger girls before the school year ends. (AP Photo/Jim Cole)
Owen Labrie, right, talks with his lawyer during his trial, in Merrimack County Superior Court, Tuesday, Aug. 18, 2015, in Concord, N.H. During opening statements, prosecutors said Labrie raped a 15-year-old freshman as part of the "Senior Salute," a practice of sexual conquest at the prestigious St. Paul's School in Concord. (AP Photo/Jim Cole, Pool)
Prosecutor Catherine Ruffle delivers her opening arguments against Owen Labrie to the jury in the Merrimack County Superior Court, Tuesday, Aug. 18, 2015, in Concord, N.H. Labrie is charged with raping a 15-year-old freshman as part of the "Senior Salute," a practice of sexual conquest at the prestigious St. Paul's School in Concord. (AP Photo/Jim Cole, Pool)
Owen Labrie's defense attorney J.W. Carney, left, gives his opening arguments as prosecutor Catherine Ruffle, lower right and Judge Larry Smukler listen Tuesday, Aug. 18, 2015, in Merrimack County Superior Court in Concord, N.H. Labrie is charged with raping a 15-year-old freshman as part of the "Senior Salute," a practice of sexual conquest at the prestigious St. Paul's School in Concord. (AP Photo/Jim Cole, Pool)
Recent St. Paul's School graduate Owen Labrie, second from left, stands between his lawyers J.W. Carney, left, and Sam Zaganjori, as prosecutor Catherine Ruffle walks by as the jury visits the school, Tuesday, Aug. 18, 2015, in Concord, N.H. Labrie is charged with raping a 15-year-old freshman as part of the "Senior Salute," a practice of sexual conquest at the prestigious St. Paul's School in Concord. (AP Photo/Jim Cole, Pool)
Former St. Paul's student Owen Labrie confers with his lawyer before the start of the second day of his trial at Merrimack County Superior Court in Concord, N.H., Wednesday, Aug. 19, 2015. Labrie is accused of raping a 15-year-old freshman as part of the "Senior Salute," a practice of sexual conquest at the prestigious St. Paul's School in Concord. (Geoff Forester/The Concord Monitor via AP, Pool)
Former St. Paul's student Owen Labrie waits for the second day of his trial to begin at Merrimack County Superior Court in Concord, N.H., Wednesday, Aug. 19, 2015. Labrie is accused of raping a 15-year-old freshman as part of the "Senior Salute," a practice of sexual conquest at the prestigious St. Paul's School in Concord. (Geoff Forester/The Concord Monitor via AP, Pool)
Former St. Paul's School student Tucker Marchese testifies Monday, Aug. 24, 2015, in the trial of Owen Labrie at the Merrimack County Superior Court in Concord, N.H. Labrie is charged with raping a 15-year-old freshman as part of the "Senior Salute," a practice of sexual conquest at the prestigious St. Paul's School in Concord. (AP Photo/Jim Cole, Pool)
Former St. Paul's School student Malcom Salovaara testifies Monday, Aug. 24, 2015, during the trial of Owen Labrie at the Merrimack County Superior Court Concord, N.H. Labrie is charged with raping a 15-year-old freshman in 2014 as part of the "Senior Salute," a practice of sexual conquest at the prestigious St. Paul's School in Concord. (AP Photo/Jim Cole, Pool)
Former St. Paul's School student Andrew Thomas testifies Monday, Aug. 24, 2015, during the trial of Owen Labrie at the Merrimack County Superior Court Concord, N.H. Labrie is charged with raping a 15-year-old freshman in 2014 as part of the "Senior Salute," a practice of sexual conquest at the prestigious St. Paul's School in Concord. (AP Photo/Jim Cole, Pool)
Defendant Owen Labrie, left, and his attorney Jay Carney are seen in court at his trial at the Merrimack County Courthouse Thursday, Aug. 20, 2015, in Concord, N.H., after Carney's cross examination of the former student who accused Labrie of raping her in May of 2014. Labrie is charged with raping the then-15-year-old girl at St. Paul's School in Concord two days before he graduated in 2014. (Geoff Forester/Concord Monitor via AP, Pool)
Former St. Paul's School student Owen Labrie stands next to a map of his school's campus in his trial at Merrimack Superior Court in Concord, N.H., Wednesday, Aug. 26, 2015. Labrie is charged with raping a 15-year-old freshman as part of Senior Salute, in which seniors try to romance and have intercourse with underclassmen before leaving the prestigious school in Concord. The defense contends the two had consensual sexual contact but not intercourse. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa, Pool)
Former St. Paul's School student Owen Labrie testifies in his trial at Merrimack Superior Court in Concord, N.H., Wednesday, Aug. 26, 2015. Labrie is charged with raping a 15-year-old freshman as part of Senior Salute, in which seniors try to romance and have intercourse with underclassmen before leaving the prestigious school in Concord. The defense contends the two had consensual sexual contact but not intercourse. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa, Pool)
Former St. Paul's School student Owen Labrie holds his arms over his head as he describes how he disrobed a female classmate while testifying in his trial at Merrimack Superior Court in Concord, N.H., Wednesday, Aug. 26, 2015. Labrie is charged with raping a 15-year-old freshman as part of Senior Salute, in which seniors try to romance and have intercourse with underclassmen before leaving the prestigious school in Concord. The defense contends the two had consensual sexual contact but not intercourse. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa, Pool)
Former St. Paul's School student Owen Labrie arrives for his trial at Merrimack Superior Court in Concord, N.H., Wednesday, Aug. 26, 2015. Labrie is charged with raping a 15-year-old freshman as part of Senior Salute, in which seniors try to romance and have intercourse with underclassmen before leaving the prestigious school in Concord. The defense contends the two had consensual sexual contact but not intercourse. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa, Pool)
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The school - whose alumni include powerful U.S. business and political leaders, including Secretary of State John Kerry - has said the charges do not reflect its culture.

The teen, who was 15 at the time of the attack and is now 16, has testified that when she accepted Labrie's invitation, she expected to kiss, but that he became aggressive and forced himself on her.

Labrie has pleaded not guilty to three felony sexual assault charges, which each carry a sentence of up to 20 years in prison.

The school's nurse, Mary Marcelli, testified that the teen had come to her office two days after the incident to request the morning-after contraceptive pill. In response to mandatory questions, the teen said that her encounter had been "consensual" but also appeared "anxious" and "teary-eyed," Marcelli testified.

Defense attorney J.W. Carney, a well-known Boston lawyer whose clients have included mobster James "Whitey" Bulger, questioned the alleged victim repeatedly on inconsistencies between her testimony on Wednesday and what she had said in interviews with police shortly after the May 2014 incident.

"I'm sorry I was cloudy because I was traumatized," the teen said.

Carney says the teen and Labrie had a consensual encounter that did not include sexual intercourse, following a friendly and sometimes flirtatious series of emails in which they discussed keeping the encounter secret.

The defense attorney pushed the teen to answer why she had told a detective she laughed at times during the encounter.

"Did you ever tell Owen Labrie if you're laughing during the encounter, it doesn't mean what to the rest of the world it means?" Carney asked. The teen explained it had been nervous laughter, ignoring Carney's request for a "yes" or "no" answer.

"A 'yes' or 'no' answer would not do that justice," she said.

Also called to the stand on Thursday were the teen's mother, an emergency room nurse, and a doctor who examined the teen, as well as one of the teen's closest friends.

The friend was questioned about statements she made to a detective early in the investigation that the accuser was willing to engage in certain sex acts with Labrie short of intercourse.

"She was talking about what might happen, and the furthest she would let it go," said the friend, who like the accuser is a minor. The judge in the case has ordered that the names of minors testifying not be made public.

The jury, consisting of 11 men and three women, will reconvene next week, when Labrie is expected to take the stand.

(Writing by Scott Malone; Editing by Jonathan Oatis and Paul Simao)

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