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Woman raped by her evil stepdad as a child snares him 26 years later
A WOMAN raped by her stepdad as a child saw him exposed 26 years later after she forced him to confess on his doorstep.
The brave victim – now a mum of two – confronted Jeff Aitken, 60, over his vile sex abuse in a showdown at his home in Stevenston, Ayrshire.
A police probe followed, and after his conviction she said: “He can rot. It shows you never give up on justice.
“He destroyed my childhood, teenage years and adulthood.”
But in a message of hope to other victims of historic abuse, she added: “Don’t give up hope. It’s hard but never give up.”
Aitken preyed on her from the age of seven and then attacked her when she was 13 following years of grooming and abuse.
His victim fought for decades to get him in the dock but was twice told there wasn’t enough evidence.
But following her confrontation, he was found guilty of rape and abuse between 1983 and 1990 at the High Court in Glasgow last week.
The woman, from Kilwinning, Ayrshire, revealed Aitken’s abuse has caused her decades of torment.
She said: “What he did has left me with distrust my whole life.
“If he hadn’t done the bad stuff, he was a good dad. He taught me how to swim and all that stuff, but this has scarred me.
“I still have roasting hot baths and use scrubbing brushes on myself as I feel dirty.”
She told how she took matters into her own hands and went to his house after prosecutors told her they couldn’t nail the monster.
When Aitken, 60, answered the door with his new family at his side she confronted him and minutes later he admitted: “Yeah, I done it.”
Recalling the day she bravely started the process that saw him finally nailed at the third attempt, the woman said: “I chapped the door and Aitken, his wife and stepson came.
“He was like a rabbit in headlights, the guilt was all over his face.”
Aitken ushered the woman — accompanied by her mum — into the house and tried pathetically to claim he only “kissed and cuddled” her.
She then hugged and kissed her mother and said: “Like that Jeff? That’s innocent. You never kissed me or cuddled me like that.”
The woman went on to list every incident of abuse she suffered as a trusting child — from being groped at seven to her rape aged 13 after he plied her with alcohol.
She went on: “My mum said to him, ‘Just admit what you’ve done and let her get on with her life.’ His wife then said the same and he replied, ‘Yeah I done it, everything she said is true.’
“I broke down but apologised to the wife and stepson for doing it.”
After her brave confrontation cops questioned everyone in the house and charged Aitken with rape and lewd and libidinous behaviour.
Aitken denied he’d made any confession — but a jury at the High Court in Glasgow didn’t believe him and he was found guilty last week.
Following the verdict, the woman shared heartbreaking details of her ordeal which began months after her mum met the car salesman in 1983.
She said: “I was a wee girl who wanted a dad and he was perfect. But the touching started when I was seven.
“He would put my hand on his groin and say, ‘Look what you do to me.’ It always happened when my mum was out at work.
“I didn’t think it was wrong — he was my dad and I idolised him.”
The grooming escalated during her primary school years to the point where Aitken performed a sex act in front of her and tried to kiss her — telling her she was “Daddy’s girl” and it was “our wee secret”.
As she grew up he began letting her try his favourite tipple, Southern Comfort and lemonade.
When her mum split with him she thought the nightmare was over — but they got back together. She found him weeping in the bedroom one day and he told her: “I want back but I only want back for you.”
The woman said: “My mum said she was thinking of giving him a second chance and I fell out with her — I didn’t say why.”
The couple did eventually break up — but when the woman was 13, Aitken got her drunk at his house and brutally raped her.
She said: “I was staying there even after the split. He was still seen as my dad by everyone else. I was drunk and woke up naked and disorientated. He was standing at the end of the bed naked.”
Aitken then forced himself on her. The woman said: “Afterwards I cried and cried and cried. He stroked my hair and said sorry.”
She left home and moved south aged 16. Two years later, in 1994, she told an aunt, who told her mum, and she went to police.
But they warned the odds of a conviction were 70-30 in his favour and she wouldn’t get a lawyer — sending her into a four-year drink and drug-fuelled spiral of depression.
After returning to Scotland with her partner the woman, then 36, went to cops in 2012 when a child protection module in her college course prompted her to try again.
They quizzed Aitken but he denied everything — and in 2014 prosecutors said there was nothing they could do.
Last April her mum took her to lunch to try to lift her continuing depression over the shattering blow — and on the way home she took the fateful decision to pay Aitken a visit.
The woman, now a mum of two, said she hopes to rebuild her life after he was brought to book for his years of abuse.
Referring to a poignant childhood photo of her in a ballerina costume, she said: “I was six when it was taken. He stole my innocence.
“But the justice system now believes what I’d been saying for over 20 years. I feel such relief.
“I am so proud of myself for getting him to admit it. My mum has terrible guilt but it’s not her fault.”
Aitken, of Stevenston, Ayrshire, was found guilty of rape, lewd and libidinous behaviour, and indecent assault on another teenage girl between 1989 and 1993.
Judge Lady Rae told him he faces a lengthy jail term for his “appalling” crimes when he is sentenced next month.
She added: “What is disturbing is how little you cared for your victims.”
Rapist Jeffrey Aitken gave girl alcohol before attack
A 60-year-old man has been found guilty of raping a schoolgirl after giving her alcohol.
Jeffrey Aitken attacked the girl, who was aged about 12 at the time, at a house in Symington, South Ayrshire, between 1988 and 1990.
He was also convicted of abusing another girl between 1989 and 1993.
Deferring sentence at the High Court in Glasgow, judge Lady Rae told Aitken, of Stevenston, North Ayrshire, to expect a significant prison term.
She said: “These are appalling charges. This was the abuse of defenceless children.
“What was disturbing was your attitude…caring little about your victims.”
The court had heard how Aitken was caught two years ago when a relative of the rape victim vowed to “name and shame” him.
The victim herself was said to have later challenged him. She told Aitken: “You abused me and you know you did it.”
Aitken denied confessing to anyone that he attacked either girl.
Prosecutor Lisa Gillespie described Aitken as “a predator” and accused him of attempting to “slither out” of the allegations.