Cumbria

Man detained over Workington cycle path rape

A man who raped an 18-year-old woman in Cumbria has been detained under the Mental Health Act.

Sean Stephenson hit his victim on the head with a brick before raping her on a cycle path in Workington in January.

The 25-year-old, of Charles Close, had earlier admitted rape.

He was given an indeterminate sentence, with a minimum term of six years, and was also made the subject of a hospital order.

During the sentencing at Carlisle Crown Court, Judge Paul Batty said Stephenson might serve a "considerable" amount of time in custody.

'Most dangerous'

Judge Batty described the attack on the woman as one of the "utmost brutality" in which she was "utterly violated".

Det Ch Insp Jeff Ashton, from Cumbria Police, said: "I've dealt with a lot of dangerous people in my almost 29 years with the police, and Stephenson is one of the most dangerous I've come across in terms of posing a danger to women."

He added that he was "delighted" with the sentence, which meant that a panel of experts would have to assess whether Stephenson was safe before he could be considered for release.

"It will be a very brave panel that releases this man before he's spent a long time in prison," he said.

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