Brittany Higgins: Bruce Lehrmann rape trial enters its final days

The trial for the man accused of raping Brittany Higgins in Parliament House has entered its third week, with more witnesses set to take the stand today.

Bruce Lehrmann is accused of sexually assaulting the former Liberal staffer in Senator Linda Reynolds’ office in the early hours of March 23, 2019.

Mr Lehrmann has pleaded not guilty to one charge of sexual intercourse without consent.

The jury has been told the trial, which has been running in the ACT Supreme Court, will likely wrap up this week.

The prosecution is expected to close its case by Tuesday, significantly reducing the initial four to six-week timeline for the trial.

Ms Reynolds, who was Defence Industry Minister at the time of the alleged incident, is expected to take the witness stand this week.

An updated witness list, which was sent out by the court last week, also suggests that Senator Michaelia Cash, who Ms Higgins worked for until 2021, may be called to give evidence.

Ms Higgins’ partner David Sharaz and Ms Cash’s former chief of staff Daniel Try are also listed to be called to give evidence.

Ms Higgins completed her evidence on Friday after returning to the witness stand following a four-day absence.

During that time, multiple witnesses took the stand, including Ms Higgins’ mother, her ex-boyfriend and Parliament House security guards.

However, a non-publication order kept their evidence from being published until Friday afternoon.

The court was also played an interview between Mr Lehrmann and police, recorded in April 2021.

In the interview, as well as addressing Ms Higgins’ allegations, Mr Lehrmann was questioned about his purpose for entering parliament that night, and said he had thoughts of self-harm after hearing about the allegations.

The interviewing police officers informed Mr Lehrmann that Ms Higgins had reported an allegation to police that he had engaged in sexual intercourse with her without consent.

“Obviously I reject that allegation because it simply didn’t happen,” the accused told police in the interview.

The trial continues.

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