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Woman speaks out as Leicester rapist is jailed

A rape survivor has spoken of the devastating impact the offence has had on her life – including the ability to bond with the child she didn’t know she was carrying at the time she was assaulted. 

The woman, who is in her 20s, was raped by Aaron Mason (pictured) after a night out in Leicester with mutual friends in May 2019.

Leicester Time: Woman speaks out as Leicester rapist is jailed
Picture: Leicestershire Police

Today (Monday 4 March), at Leicester Crown Court, the 23-year-old of Fosse Road Central, Leicester, was sentenced to five years after being found guilty of one count of rape following a trial in January.

The victim of the offence has chosen to speak out but has the right to remain anonymous under the Sexual Offences Act 2003.

“Since I was assaulted by Aaron Mason my life has never been the same”, she said.

“On the date I was raped I was unaware I was pregnant – this was confirmed a couple of days later. Although I knew my son was not fathered by the defendant, it made me feel distant from my growing child. The rape affected how I felt about the whole pregnancy.”

It was while the victim and the defendant were staying at the same location in the West Leicester area that the offence occurred. After going to sleep in separate beds, the victim woke in the early hours of Friday 24 May 2019 to discover Mason in bed with her and her jeans and underwear had been pulled down.

When challenged by the victim and others at the address, Mason offered no explanation or account for his actions but following the report to police it was established a serious sexual offence had taken place.

Following an investigation by specialist detectives, Mason was charged in 2020.

The victim added: “Over the last four years I have struggled profoundly. When my son was born I felt guilty and became very protective of him. I didn’t want anyone to touch him. I was in a very low place.

“I frequently have bad dreams about what happened to me on that dreadful night and I still find it hard to trust any men in my life. I had a lot of male friends who I no longer have anything to do with and this is through no fault of their own but because of what happened to me.

“I hope that one day I will be able to get my life back and be the confident, outgoing person I used to be before this happened to me. I want to feel safe again.”

Detective Constable Anna Pulsford from the force’s Signal team – a unit dedicated to investigating rapes and sexual assaults – is the officer in the case.

She has remained committed to getting justice for the victim and has continued to support her every step of the way.

The victim has also received support from independent support services in Leicester and in particular an independent sexual violence advisor (ISVA) working for Freeva – which supports victims of sexual and domestic abuse.

ISVAs are separate to the police and specially trained to give practical and emotional support to victim and their families.

DC Pulsford said: “The courage and strength the victim has shown since throughout has been truly commendable and while today’s sentencing will not take away the pain or the memories of what happened, I hope it will enable her to start to move forward.

“I would also like to acknowledge the incredible support given to the victim by her ISVA – she has consistently been in contact with the victim and attended meetings and court dates with her when needed. The service provided really is invaluable.”

Caroline Beckett, Sexual Violence Services Manager at Freeva, said: “Freeva is the commissioned pathway for victims of both sexual and domestic violence in Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland. With cases taking time to reach court the ISVA is able to be a constant through the journey from reporting abuse to court and beyond.

“Freeva believes that the victim should be at the heart of all the support and, whilst independent from the police investigation, can encourage and promote emotional resilience and wellbeing of all individuals who have suffered the trauma of abuse.”