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Saturday 3 December 2016

Dubliner who raped woman in front of her child is jailed for life

Courts

Trevor Lawlor, 32, who has been jailed for life, for attacking two women in their homes in front of their children.
Trevor Lawlor, 32, who has been jailed for life, for attacking two women in their homes in front of their children.

A Dublin man who raped a woman in front of her young child has been jailed for life.

Trevor Lawlor (32) was only prevented from raping a second woman when he was disturbed by her boyfriend.

Lawlor, originally from Blanchardstown in Dublin, carried out the horror attacks in Manchester on July 10 last year.

He was previously jailed for six years at the Central Criminal Court in Dublin in 2004 after sneaking into a woman's house and raping her. Lawlor, who was just 18 at the time, pleaded guilty to raping the 39-year-old woman on August 29, 2002.

"I didn't know what came over me. I am not like that," Lawlor told gardai after his arrest.

Drunk

The court heard Lawlor said he had drunk over 15 cans earlier that night and had gone into the her house when he found the front door slightly open.

Mr Justice Paul Carney certified Lawlor as a sex offender and suspended the last 12 months of the sentence.

Manchester Crown Court was yesterday told of the "chillingly similar circumstances" of the latest attack, when he forced his way into the home of his victim after he lied he was being chased by police.

In the early hours of July 10 last year, Lawlor entered an address in Newton Heath, Manchester, uninvited, and woke his victim while she was in bed lying next to her young son.

He threatened to slit the woman's throat and then removed his clothing before his victim's partner returned.

Following a struggle in the bedroom, Lawlor fled the scene only in his underwear and T-shirt and knocked on the door of a woman who lived nearby.

Known to the defendant, the woman let him in after he told her he had been kidnapped and needed to escape his attackers.

Prosecutors said this charity was repaid in a "shocking manner" with a violent and gratuitous assault while her toddler son was in her arms.

Lawlor - under the influence of alcohol and drugs - repeatedly punched her to the head and face, leaving his victim in fear of her life, the prosecutor said.

Before he raped her, Lawlor shouted to the baby: "This is all your mother is worth", and: "This is what your f****** mother deserves."

The badly-beaten woman escaped her home and alerted a neighbour, who only recognised her by her voice.

The neighbour then went to retrieve the baby, who was also blood-soaked and appeared to be traumatised and "in a daze".

Caging Lawlor for life with a minimum of 10 years in prison, Judge Hilary Manley told him: "I am convinced that you have a hatred for women and a need to use, degrade and humiliate them. Put simply, I am wholly satisfied you pose a dangerous and substantial risk to the public, particularly women and children."

The judge said Lawlor had "stolen the innocence" of his first victim's son, who witnessed the entire episode, while "only time will tell" what psychological impact had been caused to the second victim's son.

Assault

"This was a campaign of rape and sexual assault against vulnerable women in their homes in the direct presence of their young children, with no effort to spare those children of the traumatic spectacle - in fact, quite the reverse."

Lawlor was given a life term for the rape and concurrent sentences for a number of other offences, including trespass with intent to commit a sexual offence and making a threat to kill.

Hunter Gray, defending, said Lawlor expressed his remorse to his two victims.

"He wants to change. He knows his behaviour is wrong. He is willing to access any support he can get so that [the complainants] or any female is not subjected to this sort of conduct again," he said.

Judge Manley stressed that Lawlor could not be considered for release by the Parole Board until the minimum term had expired, and if freed would be on licence for the rest of his life.

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