February 2022

Man locked teenage girl in car and sexually assaulted her as she begged him to stop

A man locked a teenage girl in a car before carrying out a terrifying sexual attack just hours after meeting her online.

Rhys Stone, 21, first began chatting with his victim via a live-streaming app and came across to the girl and her friends as “pleasant” and offered to take them to out in his car.

However, the girl had no idea that Stone was a convicted sex offender – and hours later would be subjected to a terrifying ordeal.

After driving the teen to McDonald’s, he grabbed her by the neck and forcibly kissed her before sexually assaulting her – ignoring her cries to stop.

Cardiff Crown Court heard that Stone the incident left the teen, who has lifelong anonymity, scared of being around men.

She said: “I feel uncomfortable and wary and that something is going to happen. I even have an issue being in a room with my own father, even though I know him of all people would never do anything to hurt me.”

The court heard how, in early 2020, the victim was messaging her friend using video live-streaming social media app Yubo, when they were contacted by Stone – who asked to join their chat.

He introduced himself and the court heard he was initially “pleasant” as the three chatted for a short time before he suggested he pick them up and drive them to McDonald’s.

The two girls agreed, and when Stone asked them what he would get in return for driving them, they assumed he was joking and laughed it off. The victim also made it clear that she was in a relationship and did not want anything to happen between her and Stone.

Owen Williams, prosecuting, told the court that, after picking her up in his car, Stone told the victim that she was “really pretty” and “well presented”, and having collected her friend shortly afterwards, drove to Porthkerry Country Park, where the three sat in the car and started chatting.

While at the park, Stone again complimented the victim on her appearance and told the girls that he worked in a hotel and was 17 years old – when he was really 19 at the time.

The two girls then got out of the car to have a cigarette and when they got back in, Stone asked them for a threesome and for them to kiss each other. This was initially laughed off by the girls, but when the defendant became angry, the victim gave her friend a “quick kiss” to placate him, which made her feel “awkward and uncomfortable”.

Stone then reached into the back seat of the car, where the girls were sitting, and touched the victim’s leg and waist, despite her reminding him that she was in a relationship and didn’t want anything to happen.

She told him that she wanted to go home, leading to him apologising for his behaviour and suggesting that they “go for a drive”.

The girls then suggested that they invite a third friend, and asked Stone to pick her up outside her house. When they arrived, and the victim went to get out of the car, Stone pulled her back in, grabbed her jumper and started kissing her forcibly, biting down hard on her lip so that she wouldn’t pull away.

The court heard that the victim resisted and told Stone: “Get off me” while her friend also shouted at him: “She said no”. He replied: “Well, sorry about that.”

The girls remained in the car as the third friend got in, and the three of them were driven by Stone to the branch of McDonald’s.

Later that evening, Stone dropped the third friend back home, with the victim asking to be taken back home next. However, he insisted that he dropped her friend off home first, despite her living further away.

Feeling uncomfortable, the victim texted her friend who was sat in the car with her telling her that she did not want to be left with Stone and asked if she could say at hers. However, Stone again insisted that he dropped her off last and drove to her friend’s house.

When the victim tried to get out of the car with her friend, Stone pushed the passenger seat back to trap her in, before locking the doors and driving off -telling her that they were going back to Porthkerry Park.

He then began to touch the victim again, before pulling up on the side of a nearby road, and turning off the vehicle’s engine and lights. Once parked up, he grabbed hold of her neck and started kissing her and biting her lip again, before he started sexually touching her.

The court heard that the victim was crying as Stone assaulted her, and she tried to grab his wrists and pull him away, but he was too strong. She told him that she felt uncomfortable and “just wanted to go home”. Stone apologised before restarting the car and driving off, only to pull up on the side of the road again moments later.

Gripping the back of her neck, he kissed her again and told her “you like it” before sexually assaulting her further.

As the victim begged him to stop, saying: “Stop, I don’t want it”, Stone became angry, and shouted at her to “stay still”. When

she resisted, he squeezed her neck tightly.

Despite this, the victim managed to reach back and unlock the passenger door to escape. She ran home and the matter was reported to the police two days later – during which time Stone tried to message and call her.

Stone was later arrested at his home on July 1 2020 and was interviewed under caution. In his interview, he denied the incident and said that he did not know the victim or her friends.

However, following this interview, his phone was seized and data retrieved by police revealed that he had been in contact with the victim.

A victim personal statement read to the court revealed that the girl had been left “anxious and wary” by the attack.

The court was told that Stone has five convictions for four separate offences, including non-penetrative sexual activity with girls under the age of 14 and 15.

Judge Tracey Lloyd-Clarke sentenced Stone, of Hollybush Estate, Whitchurch to four years in prison, with an extended licence period of two years. He will serve two-thirds of his sentence in custody.

A restraining order preventing him from contacting his victim was also enforced