A 91-year-old woman who was raped in her own home has been “completely destroyed” by the crime, her daughter said yesterday as her teenage attacker was locked up for 12 years.
Kriss Strachan, 18, forced his way into the pensioner’s property in Bellshill, North Lanarkshire, where he repeatedly punched her before carrying out the sex attack last July.
A judge told Strachan the consequences of his actions were “truly appalling” as he passed sentence yesterday for the “cruel and degrading” attack.
The teenage mechanic, from Bellshill, was arrested after handing himself into police, stating: “It was me. I cannot believe I done it. I’m scum.”
He pleaded guilty in November and yesterday was given an extended sentence of 19 years – meaning he will be supervised by authorities for seven years following his release from custody.
Strachan, who was 17 at the time, left a party where he had been drinking alcohol at about 6:30am on the day of the attack. He made his way to the elderly woman’s home and forced his way inside the property.
The victim, a widow, tried to fight him off by repeatedly pushing him away and scratching his face while shouting and banging on the wall in an attempt to raise the alarm.
But Strachan told her to stop, threatening to kill her if she did not, and then put his hands around her neck and punched her.
He then carried out the sex attack and left.
The woman managed to get to a neighbour’s house and said: “I have been attacked, he had sex with me.”
Strachan’s mother soon became aware of a break-in at the pensioner’s house and heard the culprit had been wearing a green top.
She confronted her son after finding a similar item lying on her couch and he immediately told her he would hand himself in.
She has had no further contact with him since that morning.
Speaking after yesterday’s sentencing, the victim’s daughter described how her mother had been active and independent before the attack but has had to move away from her home of 40 years and now stays with family in a different area, spending most days on her own while they are working.
In a statement released through police, she said: “This crime has completely destroyed my mum, who up until that day lived on her own, did her own housework, shopping, socialising and enjoyed her own independence.
“Now she is totally dependent on me and talks every day about how she wishes she was dead.”
Passing sentence at the High Court in Edinburgh, Lord Boyd said: “I can only hope that one day you might begin to understand the full gravity of what you have done – the pain, suffering and humiliation you inflicted on this lady.”
Detective Inspector John Lamb said: “What Kriss Strachan did was completely and utterly despicable.”