A Smethwick man has today received a 30 year jail sentence after carrying out a string of rapes and sexual assaults in one day last October.

JAILED: Shawn Bennett

29 year old Shawn Bennett was accused of two counts of rape – including rape of a girl under the age of 16 – as well as eight other counts of sexual offence, two counts of assault, theft and one threat to kill. A jury at Worcester Crown Court were unanimous in their guilty verdict.

Bennett’s horrific crimes took place on Monday 22nd October 2018.

In the afternoon, he held a woman at knifepoint in her Redditch home, where he assaulted and raped her.

Later that same afternoon, Bennett followed a girl of just 14 as she got off a bus in Redditch. He pulled her into bushes, threatening to kill her and assaulted and raped her.

Finally, Bennett travelled to Rubery, where he made suggestive comments to two females before trying to drag them into bushes. Disturbed, he made off – stealing a mobile phone – but was quickly apprehended by police nearby.

Today (Thursday 6th June) Bennett was sentenced to 30 year in prison, and must serve a minimum of 16 years. He was also placed on the sex offenders register.

Bennett was sentenced to 30 in prison and must serve a minimum of 16 years and sign the sex offenders register.

Detective Chief Inspector Andrew Bailey from West Mercia Police said: “Bennett is an extremely dangerous sex offender who spent the day of Monday 22 October carrying out these horrific crimes.

“I would like to reassure the community that this is an isolated incident, and crime of this nature is extremely rare in Redditch and the whole of West Mercia.

“His actions have had a huge impact on his victims, who showed great courage in working with police throughout the investigation and trial. All four women’s bravery has ensured today’s outcome and I hope that following the sentence, they can all start to rebuild their lives.

“I also want to commend the hard work of all of the investigating officers involved who have worked tirelessly on this case.

“I hope this conviction will provide reassurance to other victims of sexual offences, giving them the confidence to report their ordeal in the knowledge that they will be listened to and supported. Police will always investigate and do everything in their power to bring offenders to justice.

“If anyone has been affected by this case then I encourage them to come forward and make a report to police.”

Advice from West Mercia Police 

Anyone who has been the victim of a sexual offence is encouraged to report the incident to police, where specially trained officers will help victims with care and sensitivity, and will work to get the right result for them with their wishes in mind. If you are a victim of a sexual offence you can report it to police on 101. In an emergency always dial 999.

Alternatively, there are many agencies you can approach for help, guidance or support which offer a variety of services. Please see the Stop Rape Now website for more information and for a list of the agencies available in your area.

Anyone who is a victim of any sexual assault and feels they may need support contact West Mercia’s Victim Advice Line. It is a free, independent and confidential support service. People can call 0800 952 3000 or visit Victim Advice line and do not have had to have reported the offence to the police.

Cover image: Worcester combined courts cc-by-sa/2.0 – © David Martin

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