Man jailed for rape on Burnley barge
6:00pm Thursday 22nd August 2013 in News
A HOMELESS man who attacked his victim on a canal barge in Burnley has been jailed for seven-and-a-half years.
Ricky Lee Stuart, 31, was told he must also serve an extended licence period of four years by Judge Simon Newell at Preston Crown Court yesterday.
Stuart was found guilty of sexual assault, assault by penetration and attempted rape after a week-long trial at Burnley Crown Court in June.
He had denied the charges, which related to an incident on a barge docked on the Leeds and Liverpool Canal on November 1 last year.
Stuart, of no fixed abode but originally from Mansfield in Nottinghamshire, did admit to stealing his victim’s handbag and mobile phone. He had been drinking with her at the Inn on the Wharf pub in Manchester Road, Burnley, that evening.
At the time of his arrest on November 6 last year, Stuart told police that he had laid in bed next to his victim and began kissing her, but that at no point did he expose himself.
He also said he had got the train to Blackpool that night where he sold the mobile phone he had taken from her handbag.
But he later claimed in court that he never kissed or lay next to the woman, that he sold her phone in a Burnley pub, and that he slept in a Burnley car park that night before getting a train to Blackpool the next day.
In November 2001, when he was 19, Stuart pleaded guilty to theft and indecent assault in Nottingham Crown Court after a similar attack on a girl he met at a nightclub. Judge Newell also ordered Stuart to sign the Sex Offenders’ Register for the rest of his life.