Friday, 12 Aug 2022

Rapist preying on ‘vulnerable’ women asked victim when ‘he could rape her again’

A serial rapist who used the dating app Tinder to prey on vulnerable women and attack them has been jailed for life.

Tom Rodwell, 31, admitted 11 counts of rape, one count of attempted rape and one sexual assault carries out between 2017 and 2020.

He was described as a “callous, unfeeling” monster during his trial at Teesside Crown Court, the Daily Mirror reports.

Two of his victims bravely came to court to give statements in person, telling of the devastating impact his crimes have had and the mental torture they suffered during relationships with him.

Sentencing him to life behind bars, Judge Paul Watson told him: "You are a callous and unfeeling sexual predator whose only concern was for your own gratification.

"You had no regard for the feelings of the women you raped, particularly if they stood in the way of attending to your own desires."

He added that the former Royal Navy seaman, who had been based in Scotland, used "relentless physical and emotional pressure" as well as "brute force" against his victims.

Richard Bennett, prosecuting, outlined how Rodwell contacted "single young women" to physically and sexually abuse them.

He said: "He would psychologically manipulate them and in some cases make them feel worthless. He was sexually aroused by carrying out physical violence on these victims."

His first victim, a university student who he met via Tinder, was targeted early in 2017.

Rodwell, of Acklam, Middlesbrough, became aware that she suffered from depression and anxiety, and would cruelly taunt her about it.

He did not realise or seem to care that he didn't have her consent, and carried out a number of sexual assaults, added Mr Bennett.

Rodwell then told his second victim he wanted to get her pregnant and threw her contraceptive pills in the bin.

He raped her the second time they met and then sent her a WhatsApp days later asking when he could "rape her again", the court heard.

The third woman considered killing herself as a result of her ordeal.

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Rodwell raped his fourth victim in a hotel.

The final victim said Rodwell wanted to "own her" and "choke her".

Rodwell, who had also worked for HMRC, and wanted to become a paramedic, must serve a minimum of 12 years before being considered for parole.

He will be on the Sex Offenders Register for life and cannot contact any of his victims again under a restraining order.

Speaking after the case, DC Rick Sainsbury, of Cleveland Police, said: “Rodwell’s offending is despicable. The whole investigative team wants to pay tribute to the victims.

"They have shown undeniable courage and without them we would not have got this result. They should be proud of their actions and we hope they will now be able to find some form of closure."

The 31-year-old had been cleared of "very similar violent offences" of rape in Scotland in 2018.

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