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CHELMSFORD: Wood Street; rape; 19/05/2012

September 17, 2012, 3:10 pm

A man from west Essex has today (Monday) been jailed for nine years for the rape and sexual assault of a woman in Chelmsford earlier this year.

The attack happened when 26-year-old local woman was threatened with violence inside a Ford Focus on New London Road shortly after 2am on Saturday, May 19 and driven to the entrance of the former St Johns Hospital site on Wood Street. She was then subjected to a series of sexual assaults.

The following day (Sunday), Billy Bennett was arrested and later charged with a number of sexual offences and kidnap.

At Chelmsford Crown Court on Wednesday, August 1, the 22-year-old unemployed man from Great Fox Meadow in Kelvedon Hatch pleaded guilty to three counts of rape, one count of assaulting a woman by penetration and one count of kidnap.

He was remanded in court custody prior to his sentencing back at the same court on Monday, September 17 where he was sentenced to nine years imprisonment.

Senior Investigating Officer, DCI Simon Werrett, said: “This was an horrendous attack on a young lady who was walking home after a night out in town. The long prison sentence imposed on Bennett today reflects the viciousness of the attack, including kidnapping and raping the victim. He is behind bars where he belongs and this will prevent him committing any offence for a long time. Despite the victim being subject to this attack, she remembered his car registration number and we are able to trace his movements through ANPR. Fortunately, attacks like these are very rare in Essex, which is a safe place to live, and even safer now with Bill Bennett in prison.”

Billy Bennett was also placed on the Sex Offenders Register for life.

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