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Dyfed Powys Police

Man who attempted to rape woman and four year-old daughter on family walk is jailed

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A Haverfordwest man who attempted to rape a woman and her four year-old daughter who were walking along a Pembrokeshire cycle path has been jailed

43 year-old Anthony Williams from Hill Street in Haverfordwest was sentenced to 16 years in prison after admitting attempted rape of woman over 18 and a girl under 13.

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Police were called to a cycle path between Haverfordwest and Tiers Cross just before 4.50pm on 17 May this year from a man who had come across a highly distressed woman.

Officers swiftly attended, and the woman reported that a stranger had attempted to rape her and her young daughter.

The court heard that during the unspeakable attack, Williams had also threatened to throw the woman’s other child into the river unless she complied.

After head-butting the victim twice, Williams forced her to undress both herself and her four year-old daughter, who Williams then attempted to rape.

The court heard that Williams had a drink problem, spending hundred of pounds on alcohol in the days leading up to the attack.

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Detective Chief Inspector Cameron Ritchie from Dyfed Powys Police said: “Our enquiries established DNA links between the adult victim and the suspect, which gave us strong evidence that Williams was involved.

“In addition to this, we discovered he had made significant statements to friends following the incident – relaying information that would only be known to the offender and the victims. This was despite claiming in interview that his memory was ‘hazy’ from drinking large quantities of alcohol.

“This was a horrific attack, during which the defendant tried multiple times to rape a mother and her child. For the woman in particular, it was a terrifying experience – not only going through the trauma of being assaulted herself, but to see her daughter being treated in this despicable way.

“We commend their bravery throughout the investigation.”

Judge Geraint Walters described the case as truly disturbing and Williams had submitted the woman and her child to a life-changing ordeal.

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On sentencing Williams, Judge Walters said the defendant should be given an extended sentence as a dangerous offender, as he posed a significant risk to the public and was likely to do so for the foreseeable future.

Despite being given a required one-third discount for pleading guilty, Williams was sentenced to a 24 year extended order comprising of a 16 year jail term and an eight year licence period.

In addition to the jail term, Williams will be a registered sex offender for the rest of his life. He was also made the subject of an indefinite sexual harm prevention order.

After the hearing Michael Jenkins, a senior prosecutor for the Crown Prosecution service described it as a “truly despicable crime”.

He said: “No one should have to face what the victims were put through. The mother showed great courage in doing all that she could to minimise the harm to her children.”

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(Lead image: Dyfed Powys Police)

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