BY TOBY PORTER
GOOD SAMARITAN HELPS PREVENT RAPE AS YOUNG WOMAN WALKS THROUGH COMMON
A “violent, dangerous, sexual predator” has been jailed for nine years for sexually assaulting and attempting to rape a young woman yards from a busy road – only to be foiled by a brave Good Samaritan walking his dog.
Gary Kerby, 47, attacked his victim, in her mid-20s, as she walked through Rush Common, Brixton Hill at around 10.30pm last July.
He carried out the attack less than a mile from his home in Sandmere Road, Clapham.
The woman was walking alone through the park, near Dray Gardens, within sight of the busy A23, Brixton Hill, a Catholic church, a primary school and Lambeth College – when she saw Kerby’s shadow closing in on her.
He asked her if she had any money but she replied she did not carry cash. Suddenly, he grabbed
hold of one of her arms, pulled her onto a bench and ordered her to perform a sexual act on him.
She tried to call for help but he put his hands around her neck and pushed his thumbs hard into her throat before attempting to rape her.
He repeatedly warned her: “If you don’t do what I tell you, I will stab you,”
But a passing man, walking his dog on the common, disturbed him before she was raped.
The dog walker was going along the same path where Kerby was carrying out his attack. When Kirby saw the passer-by he threatened to stab him, too, but the man stood his ground, and police say if he had not done so the attack could have been far worse.
At that point, Kerby said he would release his victim if she handed over her bank card. She did so, and an Oyster card, before fleeing the scene and calling police – and the bank card was later found in Kerby’s flat.
The Good Samaritan has never been found – or thanked.
Kerby was sentenced to nine years’ imprisonment for attempted rape at Inner London Crown Court on Friday. He had been convicted at the same court, following a four-day-trial, five weeks ago.
He was also sentenced to three years’ imprisonment for sexual assault, five years for robbery and six years for causing a female aged 13 or over to engage in non-penetrative sexual activity – all to be served concurrently.
Detective Inspector Simon Dowling, from the Child Abuse and Sexual Offences Command, said: “Kerby is a violent, dangerous, sexual predator and probably the only reason he did not carry out other offences was the appearance of a member of the public, who disturbed the attack.
“Thankfully the victim was able to get away and tell police about her ordeal. Kerby was quickly identified as a suspect and soon arrested. He now faces a long custodial sentence and I am sure London will be a safer place for it.”
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