A man accused of molesting a woman in a Swindon car park told detectives he was just there to catch up with a friend.

Dean Clark, 33, is standing trial on five counts of sexual assault. It is alleged he assaulted a woman, 20s, in the Brunel West Car Park on the evening of July 3, 2018.

Yesterday, jurors at Swindon Crown Court heard a transcript read out of Clark’s interviews with detectives in July 2018 and in February 2019.

In the interviews, which was read to the jury by prosecutor Nicholas Tucker and officer in the case Det Con Rob Barratt, Clark said he had left his flat in the David Murray John Tower shortly after 8pm, intending to go to Morrisons supermarket in Regent Circus and the Tesco Extra store in The Parade.

He turned right onto Canal Walk, planning to head to Commercial Road via Wharf Green. But he saw a friend, who he knew only as Martin, walking towards the bus stops on Farnsby Street, he told officers.

“Martin”had just bought a takeaway meal from the McDonald’s restaurant nearby. He invited Clark to join him as he ate the food on the top floor of the Brunel West Car Park.

READ MORE: Prosecutor opens car park sex assault trial

CCTV showed Clark walking through the underpass and entering the stairwell on the Farnsby Street side of the car park. Martin was said to have accessed the car park via a ramp inside the car park, which was not covered by cameras.

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Dean Clark

Clark said he and his friend were on the top floor of the car park when a thin woman emerged onto the roof. She shouted something, which he had not heard. Martin left.

He claimed the woman came towards him. She appeared distressed, as if she had been crying. She said she was depressed and “just looking for some fun”. She put his hand on her bottom and had later grabbed his arm and placed his hand down her leggings. “I thought ‘okay, I’m off’,” he told police.

The man said he’d tried to get away and claimed she’d told him: “Come on let’s have some fun.” As he was walking down the stairs he said she had pushed passed him then stopped and turned to him at the foot of the stairwell. CCTV played to the jury showed the pair leaving the car park at around 8.29pm, 18 minutes after cameras captured him walking into the multi-storey.

He abandoned plans to visit Morrisons, going to Tesco and buying chicken and a multi-pack of McCoy’s steak crisps. A receipt for £2.25 had a time stamp of 8.39pm. He returned home to his wife but did not tell her about the encounter, he said in his interview.

Clark’s alleged victim claims the man approached her on the roof of the car park and made overtures towards her, before putting his hand down her leggings. It is alleged he followed her, exposed himself then molested her again before following her out of the car park. The woman, who was caught on camera going into the car park at around 7.20pm, called 999 at 8.38pm. On Monday, prosecutor Nicholas Tucker described the account given to detectives by Clark as “simply incredible”.

The trial continues. Clark is expected to give evidence in his own defence today.