Judge sentences man to eight years in prison for raping and attacking a Rugby woman

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A MAN who brutally raped a Rugby woman in her own home and attacked her with a kitchen knife during a six-hour ordeal has been jailed for eight years.

And a judge at Warwick Crown Court said that dangerous Craig Sanderson will have to serve two-thirds of his sentence before he is freed, rather than the normal half.

Judge Simon Drew also ordered that Sanderson should remain on licence following his release for an extended period until 2025 and register as a sex offender for life.

Sanderson, 30, of Nansen Close, Daventry, had pleaded guilty to two charges of raping his victim and one of wounding her with intent.

Michelle Heeley, prosecuting, said that in August last year Sanderson met the woman and they went for a drink together during the day, and then went back to her home in Rugby.

They continued drinking, but he began to act oddly, and went out into the garden in the rain and removed his hoodie and t-shirt.

He then came back inside and locked the door. As her young child watched television in the living room, he ordered her into the downstairs bathroom where he raped her.

Afterwards, referring to her child, Sanderson told her to ‘put that thing to bed.’

His victim did so, but as she came out of the child’s bedroom she was confronted by Sanderson brandishing a kitchen knife and ordering her into her own bedroom.

“She felt helpless and did as she was told and got onto the bed. He told her to undress and pointed the knife at her neck. He then began to rape her again, restraining her by holding her hands down.

“She was crying, and he punched here to the face and told her to shut up, then paused and closed the bedroom window so people would not hear her,” said Miss Heeley.

He then went downstairs, and she followed him into the kitchen where she asked him for her phone, which he had taken.

When he asked her if she was going to call the police and she said she was, she then felt ‘a massive whack’ to her head, knocking her unconscious, and he left her there.

The blow, later described by Sanderson as an uppercut, was landed with the hand in which he was holding the knife – and the blade hit her head with such force that the blade bent.

Neighbours who had heard the commotion in the kitchen came to investigate and when they found the woman the knife was next to her in a pool of blood from the wound to her head.

When he was arrested Sanderson, who had previous convictions for violence and drugs offences and was on bail for an assault at the time, admitted that he had ‘sparked her out,’ but claimed they had had rough sex which was consensual.

Referring to a pre-sentence report, Maxine Krone, defending, said: “It is clear he did his best to be frank and accepted full responsibility for his actions. He showed an understanding of how dreadfully he had behaved.”

She said that at the time Sanderson was taking Subutex and had also been drinking alcohol all day.

“Although a sustained attack, it was effectively one incident which took place over some time.

“He has put forward no justification or excuse for his behaviour and has expressed remorse. He was scared and disgusted by his own behaviour.”

Jailing Sanderson, Judge Drew told him: “This was a six-hour ordeal involving rape and a knife attack.

“The two of you met up and eventually you went to her home. It is clear you formed a plan to assault and sexually assault her some time before the attack commenced, because you locked the doors and you took her phone.

“It was a very sustained attack, aggravated by factors including intimidation, detention and the presence of a child.

“I do consider there is a significant risk to members of the public of serious harm by the commission by you of further specified offences; and I intend to impose an extended sentence of imprisonment.”