September 2010

Withernsea rapist whose young victim wasn’t believed is jailed for 18 years

JURORS wept as they were told how a mother slapped her daughter after the little girl revealed she had been raped.

Peter Marritt, 32, of Withernsea, has been jailed for 18 years after being found guilty of seven counts of rape and one count of indecent assault.

Hull Crown Court heard Marritt had told his victim not to tell anyone because she would not be believed.

When the child did tell her mother of the abuse, she was not believed.

It was only when the girl told a teacher that the police were called and Marritt was brought to justice.

The court heard how the girl’s mother – who cannot be named for legal reasons – slapped the girl in the face and pushed her off her knee after she made the claims to her.

Some of the jury members in the trial were reduced to tears listening to the evidence.

Recorder Hyland QC told the girl’s mother she should be “thoroughly ashamed” of herself for not believing her daughter.

He said: “Your behaviour was despicable.”

The mother was given a 12-month suspended sentence after being found guilty of child cruelty. She was also ordered to undertake 200 hours of unpaid community work.

Marritt’s barrister Rodney Ferm said his client still denies the charges.

Sentencing, Recorder Graham Hyland QC told Marritt: “You raped her. She was a very young age when you grossly abused her, probably as young as two.”

Marritt was also banned from unsupervised contact with anyone aged under 18 and ordered to sign the sex offenders’ register for life.