“This is the most violent rape that I have ever investigated”
Detective Sergeant Steve Shimmons
Detective Inspector Ben Newman said: “We were told about this horrific attack early that morning and immediate enquiries identified the scene.
“Here our CSI team found a hoodie cord which was sent for forensic analysis to a laboratory.
“Luke Smith’s DNA was found on the cord and also our victim’s blood.
“As a result we were able to quickly arrest Smith and during a search of his bedroom, we found a t-shirt, hoodie jacket, minus the cord, and jeans.
“Each item had the victim’s blood on.
“In addition, Smith’s DNA was found on the victim’s bra.
“We also found Smith’s blood and the victims DNA on a sandstone rock close to the scene.
“Through consultation with our colleagues at CPS Smith was subsequently charged and remanded into custody five days later.
“I am so pleased that justice has been served for this brave young woman and that Smith has been taken off the streets.”
Smith will also be a registered sex offender for life, after being convicted after a five-day trial last Friday at Lewes Crown Court.
Detective Sergeant Steve Shimmons said: “This is the most violent rape that I have ever investigated.
“Smith initially lied to us about his involvement in this matter.
“His account changed over time and he tried to suggest in court that he had consensual sex with the victim and did not attack her.
“The jury in this case saw through his lies and have rightly now convicted him of this terrible offence.
“I want to commend the courage of the victim in supporting our investigation and giving evidence in person at the trial, with specialist support measures and help through the Independent Sexual Violence Advisory Service.
“Her victim impact statement which she courageously read out in person at the sentencing, was very powerful and moving, setting out in no uncertain terms the effect this attack had on her.
“We hope that with support she will now be able to move on with her life.
“Stranger attacks of this type are very rare.
“We always carry out swift and thorough investigations of all reported sexual assaults and we are glad that justice has now been done for this young woman.”
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