Watford knifeman jailed for rape

A man who slashed and raped his victim in an "appalling act" was sentenced to six years and nine months imprisonment on Tuesday.

Jude Smyth, of York Way, Watford, forced his female victim into a bathroom at an address in Bushey on May 24th, before attacking her with a knife and eventually raping her.

St. Alban's Crown court heard that Smyth, 32, had made the trip to Bushey to meet a woman and her friend, who left soon after.

When asked to leave the property, the defendant became very aggressive before bursting into a maelstrom of fury, leading to the attack.

The court heard that Smyth's victim suffered knife injuries to her hands whilst trying to defend herself from an ordeal that lasted most of the night.

Jude Smyth raped a woman at her home. Photo: Herts Constabulary

A friend of the victim was informed of the incident the day after, and the police were called immediately.

Detective Sergeant Georgina Fenge, of the constabulary’s Sexual Offences Investigation Team, said: “Smyth’s actions were absolutely appalling and left his victim in intense fear. I would like to commend her for the bravery and dignity she has shown throughout the trial.

“Nothing will ever erase this harrowing ordeal from her memory, but I hope she can perhaps now begin to move forward from what happened.

“There may be other victims who are reluctant to report a sexual assault because they fear they will be accused of breaching the COVID-19 restrictions. Please be assured that this is not the case and a victim of a serious sexual offence will always be treated as such. We are here to support victims and bring offenders to justice.”

In addition to his imprisonment, Smyth has also been placed on the sex offenders list for life.

Anyone in Hertfordshire who has experienced sexual abuse or sexual violence can contact the Herts Sexual Assault Referral Centre (SARC) for practical and emotional support. The centre can arrange face-to-face support, sexual health referrals, and provide forensic medical examinations for those who want them.

To contact Herts SARC, call the 24/7 helpline on 0808 178 4448, email Herts SARC or visit Herts SARC (opens in a new window).

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