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Boy, 17, admits Gloucester Park teen rape attempt

By The Citizen  |  Posted: February 19, 2014

CORDONED OFF: Police and police tape around Gloucester Park after the incident.

A 17-YEAR-OLD Coleford youth has admitted attacking and trying to rape a terrified young woman in Gloucester Park last summer.

After pleading guilty to charges of attempted rape and assault causing actual bodily harm, the boy was remanded to a secure mental hospital pending psychiatric reports on him.

He will be sentenced at Gloucester Crown Court on March 27.

The court heard the boy was just 16 when he pounced on the 19-year-old woman in the park. He later told police a friend he was with in the park had instructed him to "hurt and rape the next person he saw".

He hit the woman over the head with a bottle and then held a pair of scissors to her throat as he tried to rape her.

The boy had originally been charged with other offences including possession of an offensive weapon, assault with intent to commit a sexual offence and assault by penetration. But at yesterday's hearing Fiona Elder, prosecuting, did not proceed with those charges.

The boy had been before the court on Monday when his defence lawyers argued that he was mentally unfit to enter pleas or stand trial. But after hearing from three psychiatrists with conflicting professional views about the boy's mental capacity, Judge William Hart ruled he was fit to face justice. The judge described the charges against the boy as "extremely grave".

"The case involves a short incident of extreme physical and sexual violence," he said.

"It was on June 12 last year at about 10.45pm when the complainant was walking home through Gloucester Park. The case against the defendant is that he attacked her by striking her over the head with what was almost certainly a bottle."

He is then said to have manhandled her and attempted to rape her. The judge said when the boy was interviewed by police he told them: "I shouldn't have done it. It was bad. She didn't deserve it."

Judge Hart went on: "He was unable to give any explanation for his actions other than to say that a person he was playing football with in the park told him to attack the next person they saw. He also said to him to hurt and rape the next person they encountered."

At yesterday's hearing, after the boy had pleaded guilty, the prosecutor said she had consulted with the victim before deciding to proceed with only the two charges.

Ray Tully, defending, said he would like up-to-date psychiatric reports on the boy before sentence is passed.

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