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Totton rapist Ian Cookson jailed at Southampton Crown Court for five years for 'harrowing' attack

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A TOTTON man has been jailed for five years for the "harrowing" rape of a woman after the pair met for a drink.

Ian Cookson (55), of Powell Crescent, invited himself to her Eastleigh home after the pair met up in a bar, Southampton Crown Court heard.

There he forced himself on the 49-year-old victim and sexually assaulted and raped her.

Ian Cookson
Ian Cookson

The incident happened in August 2019 and he was subsequently charged with two counts of rape. Cookson denied the matters but was convicted of both at a trial.

Following the sentencing, Sgt Williams, of Hampshire Constabulary’s western investigation team, said: “This was a truly harrowing crime resulting in Cookson attacking a woman in her own home – a place where she should be safe.

"Today I would like to pay tribute to the woman for the courage that she has shown throughout the investigation. We understand it is not ever easy for victims to have to re-live what happened to them."

Sgt Williams added: "Our Operation Amberstone team is dedicated to providing the best response to reports of rape. This includes the use of specially trained officers who are assigned to victims and support them throughout in partnership with victim services.

Cookson was sentenced at Southampton Crown Court
Cookson was sentenced at Southampton Crown Court

"Rape investigations are some of the most complex cases we work on, and we are working hard in partnership with CPS Wessex to identify offenders and get justice for victims. Everyone with a role in investigating and prosecuting these crimes chooses to work in this area of policing.

"We want to show you that no matter the circumstances, we are committed to supporting survivors of rape and sexual assault and we will do everything we can to identify offenders and put them in front of a court."

The officer continued: "I hope this sentence today goes some way to giving the woman closure and reassures her, and the communities across Hampshire, that justice has been served."

Hampshire police said anyone who is a victim of sexual assault should report it as soon as they were ready to talk.

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