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Carlisle man jailed for 20 years for rapes committed in the 1990s

Harold Nicholson

A Carlisle man who raped a young girl repeatedly in the 1990s has been jailed for 20 years.

Harold Nicholson, 71, of Holywell Crescent, was sentenced today at Carlisle Crown Court for five counts of rape.

The offences, which were committed against a girl in Carlisle in the early 1990s, were reported to police in 2019.

Nicholson was found guilty by a jury at a hearing in November last year.

Detective Constable Kerry Gibson, North Cumbria Crime and Safeguarding Team said: “I would like to praise the victim’s bravery in coming forward and speaking to us in order to bring her abuser to justice years after the offences occurred.

“It is understandably difficult and distressing for victims of rape to talk about what happened to them, but the courage this victim has shown has enabled us to provide justice.

“There is no doubt that Nicholson’s actions have had a profound impact on the victim’s life, but I hope she and her family feel able to try and move forward now that justice has been done.

“I hope that this sentence sends a clear message to the perpetrators that no matter how much time has passed, serious sexual assaults will not be tolerated by Cumbria Constabulary and we will do everything within our power to hold them accountable for their actions and bring them to justice.

“No matter how much time has passed, support is available in Cumbria for victims of sexual offences.

“The constabulary works closely with trusted partner agencies to provide the appropriate support which is tailored to an individual’s circumstances.

“I would encourage anyone who has been victim to a sexual offence to contact police so that our officers can investigate.

“You will be supported throughout our investigation.”

To report a crime,  call police on 101. Always dial 999 in an emergency.

More information on the support available for victims of sexual abuse is available on the constabulary’s website at www.cumbria.police.uk/Advice-Centre/Personal-Safety/Rape.aspx