Thornton Avenue Man Jailed for Five Years

Night in pub ended in attack on woman

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The Police in Chiswick

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A New Year's celebration at a Chiswick pub ended in a jail sentence for a Chiswick man after a jury found him guilty of rape.

Richard Shepherd, aged 54, of Thornton Avenue was drinking with friends in the Paragon pub on Chiswick High Road. A woman in her thirties who was also drinking in the pub ended up in his nearby flat after the pub had closed.

During the course of the evening Shepherd had offered the woman a tablet which she had assumed was ecstasy as he had described it as an 'E' tablet. She accepted half the pill and he took the other half. Later in the evening she said that she began to feel exceptionally tired. She had originally planned to spend the night with a female friend but found her self back at Shepherd's flat and fell asleep on his bed. When she awoke she found that she had been partially undressed and the defendant was having sex with her.

He denied the charges saying that 'something sexual had happened' but that there was no coercion.

The jury at Isleworth Crown Court found him guilty of rape. The judge noted that he had never been in trouble with the law before and said that the risk of his reoffending was minimal. Nevertheless he was placed on the sex offenders register for life and jailed for five years.

Shepherd was disabled after losing a leg when he picked up the MRSA infection in hospital.

June 6, 2007