False rape claims left Carlisle residents in fear of going out
Last updated at 11:58, Tuesday, 01 May 2012
Carlisle's top detective says two false rape claims in as many weeks left people in fear of going out.
Detective Chief Inspector Lee Johnson also said the lies led to worries there was “a rapist on the loose” in the city.
Both women had lied about being raped in the city centre last autumn, sparking widespread concerns and leading to the waste of hundreds of hours of police time.
DCI Johnson said: “These claims caused hysteria, causing a lot of frightened people not to come into town. There was a combined impact in the city of Carlisle. The public perceived that there was a rapist on the loose, when there wasn’t.”
The claim by Harding led to a large part of Town Dyke Orchard car park and West Walls being cordoned off. Harding was taken to be examined by a specialist doctor. Various officers were drawn into the case at huge public expense.
DCI Johnson added: “Offences of stranger rape are extremely rare in Cumbria. These crimes are taken seriously and significant resources are provided to investigate them thoroughly.
“The case received a high profile. It generated an element of fear within the community of a repeat offence.”
DCI Johnson said Harding’s report was treated with respect. He added: “Genuine victims should not be put off from coming forward. Please tell us if you are a victim.”
First published at 11:26, Tuesday, 01 May 2012
Published by http://www.newsandstar.co.uk
Have your say
- Police call handling shake-up could cut demand on officers (29 comments)
- Cumbrian council set to axe chief executive job (14 comments)
- Former Carlisle hotel one of England's most at risk buildings (21 comments)
- Thirty new Cumbrian entries in Camra's latest 'beer bible' (5 comments)
- Parents furious as children kept out of lessons for flouting uniform rules (85 comments)
- 'Rude' Cumbrian town name banned at national WI fair (44 comments)
- Carlisle's Toni & Guy hair salon shuts (40 comments)
- Plans unveiled to revamp Carlisle's Castle Way (139 comments)
Court & crime
- Carlisle man who had nearly two million child porn images on computer jailed
- Driver lost control and crashed through Carlisle charity shop window
- Carlisle man jailed for lying for cocaine trafficker dad
- Cumbrian man convicted of raid on Dartmouth gift shop
- Men who turned Cumbrian mansion into cannabis farm jailed for total of almost 40 years