A 29-year-old man has been to sent to prison after being found guilty of raping a woman in Northampton.
In the early hours of January 14, 2022, Lewis Vanmeer-Sheridan, previously of Sulman Grove, Milton Keynes, met the woman after a night out and drove her to a car park in Rushmere Road, Northampton, where he made advances towards her, advances she rejected.
But instead of accepting “no” as an answer, Vanmeer-Sheridan raped her in the back of the vehicle.
The woman in question reported the incident afterwards to Northamptonshire Police and an investigation was launched with Vanmeer-Sheridan being arrested a short time later.
He was subsequently charged with rape and found guilty of the offence at Northampton Crown Court last Wednesday (January 11). He returned to the same court the next day where he was handed a sentence of eight years and four months in prison.
Lead Investigator – Detective Constable Adam Kelly, said: “The bravery of this young woman has been incredible from start to finish and though this incident will never truly leave her, I hope the conclusion of this case and the prison sentence handed down to Vanmeer-Sheridan provides her with some semblance of closure.
“Vanmeer-Sheridan’s behaviour that night was abhorrent. He felt he was ‘owed’ something by agreeing to give this woman a lift and when what he wanted was rejected, he took it instead.
“Sex is never ‘owed’ in any situation and no one should ever feel like it is. Whether someone gives you a lift or spends money on you during a date, sex should never be the expected payment in return. No means no and it is as simple as that.
“I hope this case demonstrates the seriousness with which Northamptonshire Police take reports of sexual assault. We will believe you, we will support you, and we will do everything we can to bring the offender to justice.”
If you have been sexually assaulted, please contact Northamptonshire Police on 101 or by reporting it online at www.northants.police.uk/ro.
Serenity provides 24-hour treatment, advice and support, including examination, or anyone who has been raped or sexually assaulted. The discreet and confidential service will work with you to support your choices. For urgent support and advice call 01604 601713 any time, any day or visit www.nhft.nhs.uk/serenity