Man, 29, jailed for sexually assaulting his ex-partner

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A man who threatened to rape his ex-partner in front of their children was jailed for four and a half years when he came before Londonderry Crown Court.

The 29-year-old, who cannot be named to protect the identity of the victim, was assessed as posing a significant risk of harm.

As a result, he will not automatically qualify to be released from prison after he serves half of his sentence. Instead his date of release will be determined by parole commissioners.

Once he is released, the defendant will be subject to an extended licence period for three years.

He will also be subject to the sex offenders’ register and a sexual offences prevention order for an indefinite period.

The 29-year-old pleaded guilty to sexual assault, common assault and false imprisonment with intent to commit a sexual offence on June 23, last year.

Londonderry Crown Court heard the couple’s nine year relationship had broken down some weeks before the incident.

In the early hours of the morning, the man went to his ex-partner’s home and took her mobile phone from her.

He then came back an hour later and began asking the injured party about messages on her phone.

He grabbed her and pulled her into the bedroom, threatening to rape her.

The court was told that the defendant told the woman “everyone else has been at you. I am going to rape you”.

The prosecution said that the couple’s two children were present at the time of the incident.

The court also heard that the man dragged the woman into the bathroom and forced her into the bath before removing her clothes and sexually assaulting her.

The court heard how a neighbour telephoned the police because she was concerned about screaming coming from the house.

The Crown Court also heard that the victim was terrified of her ex-partner and feared for her own safety on the night in question.

It was further revealed that the man has a previous conviction for assaulting the woman and that their relationship had been abusive.

On hearing the evidence, Judge Philip Babington said he was imposing a jail sentence.

He said the offending was aggravated by the previous domestic violence.

Further aggravating factors were that the incident occurred in the victim’s home and it happened in the presence of their children.

Judge Babington said this was “sexual offending carried out for the basest of motives, sexual revenge”.

He described it as “sordid conduct” and the victim was assaulted “quite gratuitously with no thought for the effect on her”.