A man who raped a young woman after climbing through a window has been jailed for 20 years.
Courtney Adams, 32, was earlier convicted of the rape of a 19-year-old woman in Manchester and will serve 20 years in jail with a further five years on license after release.
Adams broke into an address on Cavendish Place in Manchester at around 5:30am on 29 November.
The victim awoke to find Adams standing over her, holding a knife to her face and demanding cash and valuables. Moments later, he raped her.
Earlier that night, Adams had broken into another victim’s address on Greater Western Street armed with a crowbar.
The victim heard Adam’s breaking in and on seeing him in her flat, she fled to get help.
Whilst she was gone, Adams tore through her home and stole numerous things including debit cards and numerous bags.
CCTV cameras caught Adams as he left the property on Greater Western Street.
He tried to use stolen credit cards at a nearby shop, but failed, before turning his sights on the home on Cavendish Place.
Once getting in through an open window, he took a knife from the kitchen and went into the bedroom. What followed was a truly horrific ordeal.
Distressed and in fear of her life, the victim gave him a quantity of cash although he proceeded to ransack the room looking for more. He then attacked the victim, sexually assaulted, and raped her.
Adams then forced the victim to go to a cashpoint where he demanded she withdraw a quantity of cash, later ordering the victim climb back inside through her own window, before making off with stolen money and valuables.
Detective Inspector Kat McKeown said: “It’s difficult to convey just how traumatising this attack was for the victim.
"She was subjected to a harrowing ordeal by Adams who invaded her home where she should have felt safe and subjected her to a heinous and violent sexual assault.
“She was a young student and should have been enjoying living and studying in Manchester, but Adams took this from her and she will bear the psychological scars for the rest of her life."
Following a huge media appeal, officers were provided with compilations of CCTV by members of the public and using this footage, they were able to piece together the events of that night and follow the movements of the man later identified as Adams.
Investigators also discovered till receipts on the grass near Cavendish Place, which showed Adams attempting to use the stolen credit cards in the shop and linked him to the other burglary that had taken place earlier that evening on Great Western Street.
Investigators consulted the Greenheys Neighbourhood Team who, on viewing CCTV, identified Adams as the suspect.
This led to a warrant at Adams address, and following this phone work was completed which yielded crucial evidence that put Adams directly at the scenes at Great Western Street and Cavendish place during the times when the offences took place.
Detective Inspector Kat McKeown said: “The investigation team worked round the clock to identify and arrest Adams and to gather insurmountable evidence against him. Catching the culprit was a priority to protect the local community and ensure he couldn’t harm anyone else.
“I want to thank the victim for the bravery and strength she has shown throughout this investigation – first in reporting the crime to Greater Manchester Police and then reliving the trauma of what happened to her that night to ensure Adams was found guilty on all accounts.
“Her actions have resulted in major breakthroughs in this investigation and her courage has stopped the offender and prevented other students and members of the public from becoming victims.
“Whilst the sentence today cannot change what has happened to her, I hope the knowledge she has secured this outcome will bring some comfort and I truly hope she and her family can now in some way start to rebuild their lives.”
Support for Rape and Sexual Assault:
St. Mary's Sexual Assault Referral Centre - Manchester provides a comprehensive and co-ordinated response to men, women and children who live or have been sexually assaulted within Greater Manchester. They offer forensic medical examinations, practical and emotional support as well as a counselling service for all ages. Services are available on a 24-hour basis and can be accessed by calling 0161 276 6515.
Greater Manchester Rape Crisis - is a confidential information, support and counselling service run by women for women over 18 who have been raped or sexually abused at any time in their lives. Call on 0161 273 4500 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Survivors Manchester - provides specialist trauma informed support to male victims in Greater Manchester who have experienced sexual abuse, rape, or sexual exploitation. Call 0161 236 2182.
Want a quick and expert briefing on the biggest news stories? Listen to our latest podcasts to find out What You Need To know...