July 2020

Plymouth rapist jailed for 22 years for string of horrific sex attacks

A sex monster who raped a teenager only a day after his wife had given birth was today caged for 22 years for a string of horrific attacks.

Sick Mark Pinn, aged 53, pounced on the 19-year-old stranger in the shadow of a cathedral back in 1987, a court heard.

He thought he had escaped justice but was trapped more than 30 years later when a second victim came forward last year.

Pinn’s DNA was matched to a sample taken from a paved area outside St Mary’s Cathedral in Stonehouse in May 1987.

Make-up salesman Pinn, who is 6ft 3in tall, had also committed a string of horrific rapes and assaults on the second woman, a jury at Plymouth Crown Court decided.

He went on trial over almost two weeks after denying a string of sexual offences, but was found guilty this afternoon on all counts by unanimous verdicts.

Judge James Townsend jailed him for a total of 22 years for nine rapes, two attempted rapes and two sexual assaults by penetration.

He ruled that Pinn was a dangerous offender and should not be even considered for release until two thirds of his sentence has passed – rather than the normal half-way mark.

It means he will serve at least 14 years and eight months in prison.

Judge Townsend told him he had only been “unmasked” by the bravery of the second victim coming forward in June 2019.

He said: “In finding the courage to speak out, not that she could have known it, she was starting the process of achieving justice, not only for herself, but also a complete stranger, a woman now in her early 50s who had been raped by you in 1987.

“That was a crime committed by you on the night of May 16/17 by you as your wife lay at Freedom Fields Hospital recovering from labour.

“You went out to the city centre in the early hours and you raped a woman walking home alone.

“You would have thought you had got away with this crime and in many ways you did for many years, until the police work many years later.”

DNA found in a pool of semen found on the ground at the rape scene was a billion times more likely to come from Pinn or a close male relative than anyone else, the court heard.

It was matched to a sample taken from the father-of-three when he was arrested last year after the more recent allegations. He was rearrested and remanded in custody last December.

Judge Townsend told Pinn his crimes were “horrific”

He added: “You have an obsession with non-consensual sex, and that is further underlined by material found on your devices.”

Pinn, a long-term sales rep for Avon, will only be released after the two-thirds stage if the parole board consider it safe.

The court heard that police found sick rape search terms on Pinn’s phone after his arrest.

Pinn, recently living in Leigham, claimed he was nowhere near the scene of the 1987 rape, insisting he was at the hospital bedside of wife and baby. He added that the second victim has tried to blackmail him after he had turned down her advances.

The jury, sitting in the first Plymouth trial since March because of coronavirus, took about three hours to dismiss his story.

Prosecution barrister Lee Bremridge, reading from the second victim’s statement, said: “I felt suicidal towards the end. My life fell apart over a number of years. There was not a glimpse of hope or happiness. I had just had enough and I wanted it to end, by any means, that is what Mark pushed me to.

“I will never fully get over my experiences, but I will not let it define me.”

Mr Bremridge said that the 1987 victim had declined to give a statement about the impact of the offence. He added that she was now married with a family.

She had bravely agreed to be interviewed again and even returned to the scene of the crime.

The woman said she had been walking home alone after a row with a boyfriend. They had been to The Malthouse in Union Street.

She added she noticed a creepy stranger who was at least 6ft tall. Pinn grabbed her from behind and pressed something to her neck which he said was a knife.

The jury heard that he then dragged her towards the cathedral and raped her.

Pinn warned her that if she reported the attack he would find her and kill her. But the teenager bravely alerted the police and they were able to recover the vital DNA evidence.

The identities of both women are protected by law for life.

Ali Rafati, for Pinn, said his his client had been a man of previous good character.

He added the defendant had been the “subject of harm” and threats of harm since being remanded in custody last December.

Pinn will sign the Sex Offender Register for life.