Woman, 20, dragged into Blackpool alleyway and raped by 'predator'
A "violent" rapist who attacked and sexually assaulted a 20-year-old woman in the resort has been jailed.
David Dara, of Saxby Street, Leicester, was arrested last year (2020) after a woman reported she had been raped in the resort.
Today (March 2), the 29-year-old was sentenced to 10 years in prison, with a further six years on licence, at Burnley Crown Court.
"Dara is clearly a predatory and violent sex offender," Det Sgt Lee Kelly, of Blackpool CID, said.
“His actions that night were abhorrent. He targeted a vulnerable woman, knowing she was alone, before exploiting and attacking her in an alleyway.
“Dara is clearly a dangerous individual and his sentence reflects the gravity of his actions. I must thank the investigating officers for their professionalism in handling a difficult and at times disturbing investigation."
The incident occurred after the victim, a 20-year-old woman, was approached by a man and taken into an alleyway off Hopton Road, at the side of the Home Bargains Store in Tyldesley Road, at around 10.30pm on April 23.
Once in the alleyway, police said the offender subjected the woman to a "serious sexual assault" before violently attacking her as she lay on the ground.
The attacker then made off from the scene on a bike.
The victim was later found by two women and taken home, with the incident reported to police.
Following an investigation, detectives discovered a number of items at the scene which were "quickly linked to Dara".
These included a set of keys, a mobile phone, a bank card, an Adidas bag and a blue Nike hoodie.
Dara, along with a 19-year-old man from Blackpool, were arrested by police.
Following consultation with the Crown Prosecution Service Dara was charged with rape, with the other man released without charge.
Dara pleaded not guilty to the offence but following a trial at Burnley Crown Court he was convicted of rape and assault.
He was sentenced to 10 years in prison, with six years on licence. He was also handed a 20 year sexual harm prevention order (SHPO).
Det Sgt Lee Kelly added: "The victim has shown tremendous bravery in coming forward and telling police what happened. She has also shown great courage during the trial process.
"We would encourage anyone who has been the victim of a sexual offence to come forward and report it to us, safe in the knowledge we take all reports seriously and ensure victims are treated sensitively and professionally at all times."
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