Penrith child rapist jailed for 14 years

Date: Friday 18th January 2019
Simon Turnbul
Simon Turnbul

A PENRITH man has been jailed for 14 years for repeatedly raping a girl under the age of 13.

Simon Peter Turnbull (44), Fairhill Road, pleaded guilty at Carlisle Crown Court on Friday to two charges of rape, one of which was a “multiple incident” charge, between January and July, 2018. He admitted his crimes only after being questioned by police for a second time, and was said to have shown an “alarming lack of victim empathy”.

Prosecutor Mr Tim Evans told the court Turnbull’s victim had been so heavily traumatised and upset she could not speak at times while being interviewed by police.

Turnbull (pictured), a father of seven who had no previous convictions, was evasive under police questioning. He later said: “What can I do, what can I say? It should not have happened. I knew it was bad and knew it was wrong.”

Defence counsel Mr Mark Shepherd said: “He has admitted his conduct. His attitude appears to be changing as he realises how wrong what he was doing was.”

Judge Peter Davies said: “It’s not merely the act that concerns the court, it’s the intent and thought. The real effect is that the lives of many people will never be the same again.

“He has nobody, no visits while in prison. He will wake every day and sleep knowing that he is hated.”

He told Turnbull: “You tried to reduce your own culpability. These incidences were rape and you alone are responsible. Your failure to acknowledge that deeply concerns me and you present a profound risk to society. Your persistent and disgusting actions were a course of conduct committed for your own sexual gratification.”

Turnbull will serve 14 years concurrently on each charge. He will be due for parole after seven years but be released only if the parole board sees fit. He has been put on the sexual offenders’ register.