July 2020

Serial sex offender who wore silver wig and dress to attack a student in north London faces jail

A serial sex offender wearing a dress and a silver wig has been convicted of sexually assaulting a university student.

Mark Brown, 30, was caught on camera dashing from his home in the distinctive outfit, including a little black dress, leather jacket, and flowing silver wig, as the 18-year-old victim walked home from a Freshers’ Week night out.

He followed her as she got off a bus near Newington Green in Islington in the early hours of Friday, 20 September 2019. When she reached her front door, he pounced on her, sexually assaulted her and put his hand under her skirt, penetrating her with his fingers.

The victim fell to the ground screaming and kicked out at Brown who ran off.

Following a trial at Wood Green Crown Court which concluded today (Friday, 3 July) Brown was convicted of one count of assault by penetration.

The court heard Brown has previous convictions for “similar” sexual offending

A police investigation which included scouring CCTV of the area led officers to Brown’s home. In the garden they found a black leather jacket with latex gloves in the pockets, a t-shirt, a long silver wig and a bra as well as some hay in a Tesco bag. A loose rabbit was found in Brown’s home.

Michael Oatley, from the CPS, said: “Mark Brown targeted a lone, young victim as she made her way home from a night out during Freshers’ Week.

“Brown was dressed in female clothing including a short dress and silver wig. He stalked his victim before sexually assaulting her right on her own doorstep.

“The prosecution case included strong witness testimony and CCTV footage which showed Brown leaving his home dressed in the female clothing. At first Brown told police officers that the person in the footage was not him and that he had thrown out the wig which he previously used for fancy dress. He later changed his story and went on to say that it was him, but that he had only intended to rob the victim. He will now have to face the consequences of his actions.

“The CPS takes crimes against women extremely seriously and will prosecute offenders where there is the evidence to do so.”

Brown will be sentenced on 14 August.

The court heard how the victim had been at a club night with friends and was walking home at 3.45am when she passed by the block of flats where Brown lived.

Within 30 seconds of her passing by, Brown dashed out of the block in his “distinctive” outfit and began to follow the oblivious victim.

Prosecutor Emma Smith told the court Brown struck as the young woman reached her front door, tapping her on the shoulder and then swiftly grabbing her from behind.

“Unsurprisingly she shouted to her attacker to f*** off but he pushed her to the ground before he left the scene”, she said.

The victim told police she had not seen her attacker’s face, only the silver hair as he dashed away, but knew it was a man.

“They seemed quite strong”, she said. “It was hard for me to push them away.

Brown was arrested on October 5 after police had seized the damning CCTV footage, and discovered the female clothing at his home as well as a rabbit roaming wild around his flat.

In police interview he claimed the wig was for fancy dress but he had thrown it away months ago, maintaining his bogus account at early court hearings before changing his story.

Brown denied the attack but was found guilty unanimously by the jury of sexual assault by penetration.