Stalker raped woman protected by police

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The Independent Online
A stalker who had been following a woman for four months raped her in her own home in a violent attack which lasted two hours despite the fact that she was supposed to be under police protection.

The victim, a young mother in her thirties who lives near Huntingdon, Cambridgeshire, was badly injured during the rape and was so traumatised she was unable to tell police about it for more than a week.

Yesterday Cambridgeshire Police defended their protection operation and Detective Superintendent Tony Rogers, the officer leading the inquiry, said that he was "comfortable" with the way they had handled the inquiry.

He refused go into details about the security measures but the woman was not under 24 hour guard and is thought to have been given an alarm which she could set off if she felt threatened.

The stalker calls himself Chuck, which is possibly short for Charles, and is believed to come from the Huntingdon area. He is described as white, aged 28 to 30, six feet tall with brown shoulder-length hair and a ring in his left ear.

The rape was the culmination of a campaign of terror which began when the woman was having a cup of coffee at a hotel last September. The stalker approached and made a pass.

Over the next four months he regularly followed her and twice confronted her. Once he accosted her in Huntingdon and just before Christmas he approached her outside her home and punched her in the head, knocking her to the ground. He also sent her threatening letters and left answerphone messages.

Detective Superintendent Rogers said: "On 16 January the woman was at home around lunchtime when the same man entered her home and carried out a sexual attack on her which I can only describe as frenzied."

Matt Tapp, spokesman for Cambridgeshire Police, said: "We had in place a range of security measures which we had agreed with her were sufficient.This did not include 24 hour protection but there were arrangements for her to contact us at a moment's notice."

Living nightmare, page 3

Leading article, page 14