"This was a terrifying attack, and we’d like to thank the victim for her incredible bravery"
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A York man has been jailed for six years and nine months for raping a woman at his home in York.
Ian Mark Whittaker, 24, of Bransholme Drive, York, raped the woman in the early hours of 25 December 2018.
They had been watching TV in Whittaker’s home before going to bed at approximately midnight.
It was in his bedroom that Whittaker climbed on top of the victim, put his hands round her throat and began having sexual intercourse with her.
She repeatedly requested him to stop but Whittaker told her to be quiet and put a pillow over her face.
The court heard how the victim stopped trying to resist until the attack was over as she was frightened that she would get hurt.
She reported it to North Yorkshire Police. When Whittaker was arrested, he denied raping the victim and claimed that it had been consensual.
But evidence including a text from September 2019, where Whittaker admitted what he had done and apologised to the victim, led to him being charged with the rape.
He continued to deny he had raped the victim, but a jury found him guilty, and yesterday at York Crown Court he was sentenced to six years and nine months in jail.
A previous restraining order was also extended from 15 years to life, preventing him having any contact with the victim, and he has been placed on the Sex Offenders Register for life.
Detective Constable Brownbridge who led on the investigation said:
“This was a terrifying attack by Whittaker, where he breached the victim’s trust and I welcome the sentence that was handed out today.
“I’d like to thank the victim for her incredible bravery, not only for coming forward to report this but also for her ongoing support throughout the court process.
“If you’ve been the victim of rape or sexual assault, no matter when it happened or even if you’re not 100% sure what happened, there are many different ways you can report it to us either via our website, over the phone or in person.
“If you’re not ready to talk to the police just yet, that’s okay too, on our website you can find a range of organisation who you can speak to in confidence and get support, advice and medical help - just search for rape and sexual assault.
“Whatever has happened we’d sooner hear from you so that we can make sure you’re safe.”
Visit North Yorkshire Police’s website for more information about rape and sexual assault including where you can find medical help, support and advice, plus how to report rape or sexual assault.