August 2023

Officers praise victim’s courage, as abuser faces 28 years in jail

A child rapist has been jailed for subjecting a woman to nearly a decade of sexual abuse, starting when she was a child.

Richard Williams, from Hartlepool, has been sentenced to 28 years behind bars after being found guilty of seven sexual offences at Teesside Crown Court in May.

The 61-year-old was charged with four counts of rape, one count of rape of a female under 16, one count of indecent assault and one case of indecent assault against a female under 16.

Williams was initially reported by a third party in 2018 who said he had sexually assaulted and raped his victim.

Inquiries began and the victim received specialist support while officers from the child abuse and vulnerable adults investigation unit worked with other agencies to piece together what had happened.

Charges were formally brought against Williams this year and he will spend 28 years in prison after being found guilty.

He also received an indefinite restraining order and a sexual harm prevention order (SHPO) and will be subject to stringent conditions and monitoring.

Williams’ constant lying also meant the victim had to endure the stress of a trial

Cleveland Police have praised the victim for her bravery after she was forced to relive her ordeal at trial due to Williams’ lies.