Birmingham Canal Toepath Rapist Jailed

A man has been jailed for four years for raping a student on a canal toepath in Birmingham.

Matthew Whitmore was on his way to work when he spotted the 19-year-old making her way back to her student accommodation after a night out along Curzon Street just before 5am on Friday 13 March this year.

The 25-year-old, from Newland Road, Small Heath, struck up a conversation with the young woman and as they passed the entrance to the canal, he grabbed her and pulled her from view of the road and passing traffic and raped her.

Detective Constable Lisa Monahan, from the force’s Public Protection Unit, said: "The young lady was deeply distressed by what had happened to her, but she was brave enough to call police and be examined by a doctor."

Detectives immediately launched an investigation and CCTV footage and DNA evidence soon led them to Whitmore, who was arrested from his workplace two weeks later.

Faced with undisputable evidence, Whitmore pleaded guilty at Birmingham Crown Court on 13 May and was sentenced to four years today (Monday 1 June).

DC Monahan added: "I hope the sentence today will help this young woman come to terms with what happened to her and serve as a reminder that if a woman says no or is incapable of consenting, either through drink or drugs, it is a criminal offence. Rape is rape and there are no excuses or any grey area."

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