Cold-case rapist jailed

A 60-year-old Essex man's been sentenced to 10 years in prison for raping an office worker in east London 23 years ago.

Geoffrey Davey was arrested at his home in Goldsmith, Grays, after forensics tests, which weren't available in 1987, were carried out on the victim's clothing.

Southwark Crown Court heard how he crept in to her offices at the end of the working day, hid behind a pillar and then attacked his victim as she walked past, strangling her while threatening to kill her unless she stopped screaming.

Just 40 days later he went on to rape another woman, a doctor, in her home in Acton, west London. He strangled her until she was unconscious and the baby she was nursing fell to the floor.

Her initial screams alerted neighbours and police arrested Davey at the scene; he was later sentenced to six and a half years.

Judge Andrew Goymer, who heard details of the old offence, said he was surprised Davey had not been charged with attempted murder: "No doubt you hoped that this offence would not see the light of day - it HAS come to see the light of day and you must face the consequences."

"It may be that your intention was not to satisfy sexual urges, but to humiliate and degrade your victim. You succeeded in doing just that."

"She fought back bravely and you, in a cowardly fashion, humiliated, terrified and degraded her, and sadly it's likely to haunt her to the end of her days."

Davey showed no reaction as he was sent down.

Earlier Nicola Merrick, for the prosecution, said it was a "tremendous sadness'' that Davey was not caught at the time: "Clearly the attack has remained with her for the past 23 years and is with her today, it caused her to be unable even to speak properly."

"This was a violent attack upon a complete stranger whereby he broke in to the premises in order to perpetrate this attack."

"He remained at large and was able to go on and offend again."

The court was also told Davey was previously convicted of indecent exposure on a train and fined £100 by Barking Magistrates in May 1986.

Detective Inspector Glyn Whittick of the City of London Police said: "It's always pleasing when scientific advances offer us a fresh perpective on a case."

"Once we get that fresh lead there is a tangible determination among the team to see such investigations through to a successful conclusion."