February 2022

Darren James jailed for 15 years for sexually assaulting and raping girl

A sex predator who raped and sexually abused a young girl has been jailed for 15 years.

York Crown Court heard how the child became separated from the rest of her family while out shopping in York.

Darren Lee James, 42, then took her down an alleyway by a shop.

There it was dark, and he carried his first sexual assault on her, York Crown Court heard.

A few days later, he raped her and carried out a serious sexual assault on her.

In a video recorded by police years after the abuse the victim said: “I still feel frightened of him.”

She was also angry about what had happened to her.

Last December, the jury heard how the girl initially didn’t tell anyone what had happened to her.

But then she confided in a relative and told her and a social worker what James had done to her.

The jury heard how she had been scared that she would get into trouble.

James and the girl are not related.

“This was a sustained incident on a particularly vulnerable complainant,” Recorder Dapinder Singh QC said about the abuse.

He handed out a 15-year prison sentence. James will have an extra year of probation officer supervision after he finishes his prison sentence because his crimes make him an “offender of particular concern”.

He was put on the sex offenders’ register for life and also made subject to a sexual harm prevention order aimed at stopping him committing more sexual offences for an indefinite period.

James, of Thoresby Road, Acomb, denied rape and two charges of sexual assault but was convicted by a York jury at a trial last December.

For him, Amanda Johnson said: “There is nothing I can say about the offences themselves.”

She said she was not in a position where she could put forward any mitigation based on remorse by the defendant.

Although James had convictions for four previous offences, he had none for sexual offences and had never been to prison before.

Members of both the girl’s family and James’ family were in court for the sentencing hearing.