Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Woman makes 14 false rape claims -- against the same man

Preface to the story below:  This is among the lengthiest sentences for a false rape claim we've seen. Lengthy incarceration is appropriate here, given the woman's appalling lies and the fact that her malefactions were proven by video. Just as in the story we reported right below this one, thank goodness for video! How many innocent men would be rotting away in prison behind bars without it?

Here is the news story as reported here:

A mother has been jailed for four years after falsely claiming her boyfriend had raped her 14 times in a bid for revenge after their baby was taken into care.

Former Tesco worker Heather Gibson, 29, of Grimsby, Lincolnshire, was told by a judge that her actions had made it more difficult for real victims of rape to be believed in court.

Her former partner Gavin Plaistowe, 30, was held in police custody for 35 hours after she accused him of 12 rapes. Mr Plaistowe waited a month for police to investigate and find he was innocent.

While on bail, Gibson claimed Morrisons worker Mr Plaistowe then raped her twice - while she awaited trial for perverting the course of justice.

But CCTV of Gibson at work in the supermarket undermined her accounts. She alleged two gang rapes on two occasions - the last time with six men, Hull Crown Court was told yesterday.

Mr Plaistowe could have been jailed for 20 years if the allegations had been true.

But Gibson later confessed to a friend she blamed Mr Plaistowe for losing her child into care because she had made a complaint about him dropping the baby. Social Services took the baby into care for lack of parenting skills.

Gibson, a former grammar school pupil, sought revenge with the false claims to the police. But when she was charged with perverting the course of justice, she forged a string of letters.

They purported to be from officials including a crown court judge, a police officer, a justice minister and even Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg.

They were sent to Bath and North Somerset Social Services, where her daughter was in temporary residence. They claimed she had been the subject of wrongful allegations and expressed outrage she had been charged. They were all found to be produced by Gibson.

She even took police to the spot of one of the alleged rapes, saying she had dragged by the hair and her bottom lip had been bitten. Gibson gave detailed accounts of each rape in video interview, but admitted she had showered after the attacks and lost all forensic evidence.

She claimed to have details of contacts of witnesses in a cupcake-shaped notebook. However, the police recovered CCTV of her buying the notebook from a supermarket the day after she told them of its existence.

The first rape she claimed happened when she was eight months pregnant by Mr Plaistowe. She said she was raped again after giving birth and on two occasions in April 2012 - first by Mr Plaistowe and four friends then by Mr Plaistowe and five others.

He was arrested on April 4, 2012 and held in Grimsby Police Station from 12.20am until 6.26pm the following evening - a period of 18 hours. Such were the number of allegations he was re-arrested on April 26 2012 at 6.30am and released at 11.30pm after 17 hours.

He did not know how seriously the police were treating the claims until May 4, 2012 - exactly one month later. Gibson pleaded guilty to four counts of doing an act tending to pervert the course of justice as specimens of her conduct.

Simon Kealey, prosecuting, said two Humberside Police officers had spent eight weeks investigating the case. There had been two police interviews of Mr Plaistowe, three interviews of Gibson and a large amount of case preparation for a trial.

Mr Kealey said it had diverted police attention and all this was in addition to the terror Mr Plaistow had suffered. He said Gibson would not get back her daughter.

In her pre-sentence report, Gibson showed no remorse. She said all her allegations were true, despite her guilty pleas - and that she had only pleaded guilty to get everything sorted quickly.

Joanne Golding, defending, said Gibson had no mental health problems which could allow the judge to find a different sentencing option - although there were clearly issues.

‘It seems to me the catalyst of this was the taking of the baby into care,’ said Mrs Golding. ‘The consequences of this were catastrophic.What she alleged against Mr Plaistowe was actually impossible. However, I have to concede there was a degree of persistence and subterfuge.’

She admitted Gibson had since found a new boyfriend, was engaged - and he was visiting her in New Hall Prison in Flockton, West Yorkshire, cycling 174 miles in a round trip to see her, taking four days.

She claimed she fell pregnant by him in January, before she was remanded in custody, although prison officials say a series of pregnancy tests are negative.

Sentencing, Judge Graham Robinson told Gibson: ‘Allegations of rape and other sexual matters have to be treated seriously by the police. They have no option. To do otherwise would open them up to complaints. In this case it took two CID officers six to eight weeks to get to the bottom of the allegations.

'There were other uniform officers doing interviews. There were two medical examinations, but it goes beyond all that. When a woman cries rape it dishonours the genuine victims of rape. You have no right to deserve the sympathy given to those women. You have no place among their number.

‘The Lord Chief Justice said once the public realise there are women, such as you, who are prepared to make false allegations of rape, it causes juries, in cases of genuine rape, to think twice.

‘It can no longer be said that women will not lie about such things. You make cases where women genuinely have been raped harder. This was a serious case - Mr Plaistowe must have been terrified.’