Man jailed for 12 years for raping woman in Litherland

A man has been jailed for 12 years for the rape of a woman in Litherland.

Alex Belay, 26, of no fixed abode, was found guilty of rape following a trial by jury at Liverpool Crown Court.

The incident occurred on 27 June 2022 when Belay met a woman aged in her 40s at a bus stop in Litherland.

They went to a nearby flat, where Belay held the woman against her will, threatened her with a knife and raped her.

Following an extensive investigation, detectives arrested and charged Belay with the offence.

In an impact statement provided by the victim, she said, “Before this happened to me, my life wasn’t perfect, but I was a jolly person, I was happy going and always had a smile on my face. I felt that I had everything to live for.

“I would do anything for anyone, but since the day that happened to me I have been so angry and depressed and I just feel numb. I hate my life, I hate me, I feel so dirty and just have no self-respect.

“I feel vulnerable and unsafe when I am out of the house, this has knocked my confidence completely. I am always on edge and paranoid, I walk around with my head down and get to where I need to be quickly so that nobody approaches me or sees me.

“What happened to me has truly wrecked my life forever and I know that I will never get over this, I will never be the same again. I don’t recognise myself any more. I am scared that I will never again be the woman that I remember being before this happened to me.”

Detective Constable Barry Woodbridge, who led the investigation, said, “This was a terrifying incident for the victim and I want to acknowledge her bravery and courage in reporting it to the police.

“Belay denied the offence, forcing her to relive the horrific ordeal through a trial, but thankfully the jury saw through his lies.

“Today’s result shows that violence against women and girls will simply not be tolerated and we will work tirelessly to bring perpetrators to justice.

“We are committed to protecting victims of sexual offences, and anyone who reports an incident to us will be safeguarded and supported throughout the investigation by Specially Trained Officers and Sexual Violence Advocates who will provide all the relevant support.

“Anyone that has been a victim of a sexual offence, is concerned for the safety of someone they know or suspects someone to be engaging in this criminal activity, should come forward and speak to us.

“We have a team of dedicated staff who will expertly and compassionately deal with your reports and we will do everything we can to bring offenders to justice.

“We take all such reports extremely seriously, and work with partner organisations such as Victim care Support Service and RASA who are there to support victims if this crime.”

To report a sexual offence call 101 where you will be spoken to by specially trained officers or you can pass information to Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

If you’ve been affected by sexual violence of any kind, support is available through the Police and Crime Commissioner’s Victim Care Merseyside service delivered jointly by two registered charities.

In Liverpool, Sefton, and Wirral, support is provided by Rape and Sexual Abuse Support (RASA) Merseyside who are available on 0151 558 1801 and, in St Helens and Knowsley, by the Rape and Sexual Abuse Support Centre (RASASC) Cheshire and Merseyside who can be contacted on 01925 221 546 or 0330 363 0063.

Image: Alex Belay/Merseyside Police

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