A man has been jailed after raping a woman at knife point in Hackney.

Colin Richmond, 48 (12.09.73), of Herbrand Street, Camden was sentenced to 19-and-a-half years’ imprisonment at Wood Green Crown Court on Friday, 4 February.

He was found guilty of rape on Monday, 2 August 2021 following a two-week trial at the same court. During the trial he pleaded guilty to two counts of actual bodily harm. He will also remain on the sex offenders’ register for life.

Detective Constable Rob Johnston, who investigated said: “Colin Richmond committed horrifying acts of violence and is clearly a threat to women. He has now faced justice for his crimes, which sadly leave a lasting impact on the victim. We have continued to provide help and support to the victim throughout this process.

“Our priority across the Met is tackling all forms of violence, especially violence against women. I urge anyone who has been a victim of any form of sexual assault to please talk to us and report it. We have specially trained officers who work closely with charities and partner organisations to provide the right support. Please do not suffer in silence, because we are here to help.”

The court heard that Richmond had known the victim, a women in her 40’s. In the weeks leading up to raping her, Richmond violently assaulted her on two occasions.

In March 2020 he beat her around her body, bruising her ribs. In early April, whilst recovering from her injuries Richmond hit her in the face and beat her about the body causing black eyes, a split lip and cuts and bruises.

On Thursday, 23 April 2020 the victim received a call from Richmond, asking her for help. She agreed to meet him but Richmond became angry and started to become aggressive towards her, grabbing her by the throat. He then grabbed a large knife and raped her. The victim managed to escape from the house and reported the incident to police.

The victim’s impact statement was read out at court, she said: “Firstly I would like to thank all involved in supporting me through this very traumatic and distressing situation, whom without I would not have been unable to have come this far in my recovery, which is still very much ongoing.

“Before meeting Richmond I was confident, outgoing and a sociable person however I am now very withdrawn, quiet, private and find it a struggle to socialise, or be around familiar or unfamiliar people.

“I also have trust issues and become very anxious and find it overwhelming at times being in the company of others both male and female. I am slowly trying to rebuild my life step by step, day by day and know that I have a long and slow journey ahead but believe that with the continuous assistance, support, patience and medication provided I will again regain my love and appreciation and all that I have lost emotionally and physically due to this traumatic and no fault of my own situation.”

Reports of rape and sexual offences have steadily increased over recent years. To assist with our investigations we are investing £11 million in digital forensics to help us bring more criminals to justice and deal more effectively and efficiently with victims of crime, including rape and serious sexual offences. This is enabling us to develop and use our technology to catch more criminals, speed up investigations, build more successful criminal cases and reassure victims.

If you need to report a crime, you can do so by contacting police on 101 or reporting online. Always call 999 in an emergency.­

+ If you have been a victim of sexual assault or rape or you have information about an offender, contact police on 101 or 999 in an emergency – there are specially trained officers who will listen and investigate where needed.

Further information, including details of agencies and charities that can offer support can be found on our website.