A judge has told a woman who falsely claimed she’d been raped by her boyfriend: “This was a wicked, terrible thing to do.”
Sabrina Booth-Guy, 22, of Lydford Street, Salford, told police that boyfriend Stephen Delaney had raped her in their home.
But she refused to undergo a physical examination or a police interview - and after Mr Delaney had spent 18 hours in custody she withdrew the allegation.
She told officers she had made up the story to ‘get her own back’ following an argument over her alleged infidelity on Facebook.
The court was told Booth-Guy and Mr Delaney were still together despite the allegations and in a letter to the judge Mr Delaney said that he loved her and would continue to stand by her.
Locked up August '12
The pair both wept as Booth-Guy was caged for four months at Manchester Crown Court.
Sentencing her, Judge Philip Cattan told Booth-Guy that he had to make an example of her to deter other false allegations.
He said: “This was a wicked, terrible thing to do and resulted in Mr Delaney being held in custody for 18 hours and in a serious waste of police time.
“You told your mother, nursing staff and police that Mr Delaney had raped you but he had not and you knew he had not.
“I have heard that Mr Delaney still loves you and stands by you but I have got to consider whether this could happen again.
“It is precisely this sort of thing that undermines the confidence juries have when they hear an allegation of rape.
“The courts must and will be firm where false allegations of rape are made and must send a message that false allegations of rape mean custody.”
For the prosecution, Christopher Beckwith told the court that Booth-Guy had withdrawn the allegation two days after triggering the police investigation in January.
He said: “She did not have any sign of visual injuries and said she did not want to take part in an interview but would do one at a different time.
“She also said she did not want to undergo a physical examination.
“She then later told police she had wanted to get her own back after an argument and that she had wanted to hurt him due to the things he was calling her.”
Alistair Reid, defending Booth-Guy, said she had a history of attention-seeking behaviour but had shown courage in quickly moving to withdraw the accusation.
He said: “Difficulties in her past have perhaps led to her seeking attention but through the support of Mr Delaney and regular counselling she is working through those problems.
“She never sought to embellish any details and she became trapped between not wanting to continue the lie but being terrified of the consequences if she was to own up. She showed great courage to come forward and set the record straight.”