April 2023

Probe launched after Ponteland rapist Dean Graham dies in prison

A rapist has died in prison just 10 months after being sentenced to nearly seven years

Dean Graham was being held at HMP Northumberland when he passed away on April 11.

He was jailed for six years and 10 months after being convicted of rape and sexual assault following a trial at Newcastle Crown Court.

A spokeswoman from the prison said an investigation into Graham’s death was now under way.

“We can confirm that a prisoner sadly died at HMP Northumberland on April 11,” she said. “The next of kin have been informed and our thoughts are with the family.

The court heard how Graham’s victim had fallen asleep on a sofa after a night out and woke up to find him raping her. The attack came to an end when she punched him in the face.

Graham of Kirkley Drive, Ponteland, Northumberland, denied rape and sexual assault but was convicted by a jury after a trial.

In June last year the then 42-year-old was sentenced to six years and ten months behind bars and ordered to register as a sex offender for life.

The court heard Graham has previous convictions for violence and disorder but none for sexual offences.