- Associated Press - Friday, September 18, 2015

NEWARK, N.J. (AP) - A disabled man couldn’t consent to sexual contact with a Rutgers University professor on trial for assaulting him in her office in 2011, a psychologist testified Thursday.

Dr. Paul Fulford reached that conclusion after a 2011 evaluation in which the 34-year-old man didn’t communicate with him, NJ.com reported (http://bit.ly/1NIjOCQ ).

“My final opinion, essentially the bottom line, was that he was not competent to give consent to sexual activity,” Fulford testified. “It’s a question of does he have the understanding to consent to it.”

The statements were made during Anna Stubblefield’s trial on two counts of aggravated sexual assault. She’s accused of targeting the man because of his mental incapacitation and physical limitations. He has cerebral palsy and doesn’t speak.

Stubblefield, 45, of West Orange, has claimed she and the man had fallen in love and that he consented to the sexual activity through a technique known as facilitated communication. Stubblefield is expected to testify she believes the method was a valid means of communication.

Superior Court Judge Siobhan Teare has barred expert testimony on facilitated communication because she determined it’s “not a recognized science.”

Stubblefield met the man in 2009 through his brother - then a Rutgers student- who asked her to help the man with his communication, prosecutors said. She worked with him for two years before revealing the relationship to his mother and brother in May 2011.

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Information from: NJ Advance Media.

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