September 2023

‘Sadistic’ child abuser raped and tortured three children over 10-year reign of terror

A sadistic abuser raped and threatened three children in what became a decade-long reign of terror.

Lee Smith inflicted both mental and physical torture on the youngsters and attempted to barricade himself in his home to evade justice.

Smith, of Melton’s Blakeney Crescent, abused the two girls and one boy over a 10-year-period from January 2012 to December last year.

The horrific abuse saw Smith inflict mental and physical torture on the trio, with the two girls regularly subjected to sexual assaults and rapes.

The boy also faced numerous and vicious attacks at the hands of Smith, while all three faced threats of violence against them. This was used by Smith as a way into manipulating the children into allowing further abuse to happen.

Smith’s crimes came to light in December 2022 when a report of the abuse by his victims was made to police. After initial enquiries were carried out, the case was quickly escalated by Leicestershire Police with specialists called in to join the investigation.

However, Smith had no intention of giving in to police when they swooped in to make an arrest as he barricaded himself inside his home on Monday, December 19, last year.

In what became a 12-hour stand-off with officers, he made serious threats to harm himself and others inside the house if police entered.

He was detained though, with police searches at his Blakeney Crescent home finding a stash of cannabis and haul of weapons.

This included a baton and knuckle dusters.

Investigations over the next nine months pieced together the true and horrific extent of Smith’s actions where 70 witness statements were accompanied by hundreds of pieces of evidence.

Police charged Smith with dozens of offences relating to the abuse as well as many more in the wake of the stand-off.

He went before a trial Leicester Crown Court in June where he was found guilty of 21 offences, including seven counts of rape.

He admitted five more offences, including two counts of possession of an offensive weapon.

Smith was back before the courts on Monday (September 4) when at Nottingham Crown Court he was jailed for all 26 charges.

He was handed a life sentence and must serve a minimum term of 15 years and 111 days.

Full list of convictions

  • Seven counts of rape

  • Four counts of actual bodily harm (ABH)

  • Four accounts of assault by penetration

  • Two counts of controlling or coercive behaviour

  • Two counts of sexual assault

  • One count of sexual assault of a child

  • One count of sexual activity with a child

Smith also admitted to a further five offences:

  • Two counts of possession of an offensive weapon

  • One count of damaging property

  • One count of possession of a class B drug

  • One count of affray