May 2023

Man sentenced in rape investigation

A woman from Colchester who was raped while she slept has seen justice served on her attacker after an extensive and persistent investigation.

The woman, who told a court she struggled to leave her house following the attack, endured years of delays due to the Covid-19 pandemic before finally facing a trial in March.

She was supported throughout the case by a specialist detective and an Independent Sexual Violence Advisor (ISVA).

Her attacker, 24-year-old Shaun Western, was convicted of rape at Chelmsford Crown Court and sentenced to six years and six months imprisonment on Tuesday 2 May.

The victim had been on a night out with friends in Colchester in September 2018, returning to a flat as the night drew to a close.

After she was put to bed, she awoke suddenly to find Western raping her.

She screamed, before Western jumped off her and fled the flat.

We were contacted and arrested the defendant the next day, identifying several key witnesses and carrying out extensive inquiries.

In his interview with us, Western, of Edward Paxman Gardens, Colchester, tried to claim the sex was consensual, but a jury saw through his story.

Western will be subject to an indefinite restraining order and will remain on the sex offender’s register for life.