September 2016

Woman who was repeatedly raped from age of 3 speaks out after abuser is sentenced


A victim of sexual abuse, who was repeatedly raped from the age of three, said she is glad her attacker is finally behind bars.

The 24-year-old spoke out following the sentencing of John Williams, last month.

Williams, aged 57, of Castle Street, Skipton, was sentenced to 20 years in prison, at Bolton Crown Court.

He was found guilty of three counts of rape, five counts of indecent assault and gross indecency with a child and put on the sex offenders register for life.

His victim, formerly of Bolton, where some of the incidents happened, said she cried in happiness when he was sentenced.

She added: “I used to think he was an evil genius, like a devil who could control my life.

“He was so manipulative and I thought he could get away with anything.

“When I was younger and there was a plane flying over I would think it was him and he was watching, I always thought he was watching.

“I wondered whether he would even be found guilty because he could just worm his way out of things.

“And I knew a trial was probable because I knew he wouldn’t admit it.

“I came face to face with him in court, they said I could have a screen but I said ‘no, why should I have to hide behind a screen and hide from him again?’ I wanted to see him.

“If I could say anything to him now I would say ‘you picked the wrong person’.

“It still affects me, but now I want to just laugh in his face because he isn’t an evil genius because he is in prison now.”

Williams abused his victim over an eight year period from the age of three.

She said she remembers first telling someone when she was six-years-old, in the school playground.

She added: “I knew what was happening was wrong, but fear was the main thing.

“Then the worst thing was that I knew it was wrong, but I couldn’t stop it.

“I remember telling girls in the playground. I don’t know how I said it, but we were all telling secrets as little girls do and I came out with that.

“They just looked at me like I was a weirdo.

“I never told anyone after that, I think it was another six years before I said anything again.”

The woman, who now lives with her father in London and works in recruitment, told police about Williams in 2013 and an investigation began.

This was also the first time she had told her father.

He said: “The fact that he got 20 years just makes me realise the enormity of it all.

“I don’t think it’s something that you can ever get over but you can get accustomed to it. It is hard to talk about still.

“That is the problem with something like this, you can’t share it and most people never come across anything like this in their lives. It is very sad.

“She has had so much to deal with in her life.

“It is just so sad that she has spent half of her life being petrified.

“I feel guilty that she didn’t tell me but I can understand why she didn’t.

“I think she was scared of the repercussions she might face.

“She has had no good luck in her life really but now I just want her to settle down and find a nice young man.

“I support her and she supports me.”

In a statement from GMP, DC David Aschcroft, who dealt with the case, he said: “This was a historic abuse crime of rape, indecent assault and gross indecency on a young girl.

“This is a great result with a dangerous offender receiving a significant sentence which reflects the gravity of this offence.

“The victim displayed courage and bravery throughout the case and I want to commend her.”

The woman now said she is now hoping to look to the future, knowing her offender is behind bars.

She added: “I think I would have been different to how I am now if it hadn’t happened.

“I am different.

“It is hard to explain but it does affects a lot of things in my life.

“I would say that it has made me quite an outspoken person, I am a friendly person but I can stand my ground.

“And that’s what I don’t think he expected when I was in court, he expected to get the shy little girl I had been.

“But I am a lot stronger now.

“I am obviously still a bit in denial about what happened, but this sentencing has made a big big difference.

“I just want to put it behind me and it be in my past, it will always be there but before he was sentenced I was living in the past, now I can look to my future.”