Man admits Fareham footbridge rape

A MAN has admitted raping a woman in Fareham Town Centre last month, bringing an end to an investigation that lasted nearly two weeks and saw repeated appeals for information from officers online.

The twenty-two year old woman had told police that she left Slug and Lettuce in the town at around 1am on March 19, before walking along West Street when a man she did not know approached her. She was then threatened by the man before he assaulted and raped her.

An investigation was launched, led by Hampshire Constabulary’s Operation Amberstone team, and 39-year-old John Sommerville Taylor Horne was identified following extensive enquiries. Following his arrest he was charged with rape and assault occasioning actual bodily harm.

Appearing at Portsmouth Crown Court earlier today (April 25), Horne, of Broadacre Place in Fareham, admitted rape and assault occasioning actual bodily harm after he attacked the woman on the footbridge that crossed over Western Way, close to Fareham train station. He was remanded in custody to appear at the same court in a separate hearing for his sentencing on May 25.

In response to the hearing, Detective Chief Inspector Roger Wood said: “This was a shocking incident which will forever have an impact on this woman’s life.Her courage and support throughout this investigation has ensured the conviction of a very dangerous man.”

He continued: “This crime also had a huge impact on the local community who were understandably concerned about what had happened. I hope the conviction that has been secured provides some reassurance to residents that we will do everything in our power to investigate these types of incidents thoroughly and bring those responsible to justice.”

If you have been affected by sexual abuse, you can report this to police in confidence by calling 101. Not everyone who has experienced this type of abuse has the confidence to report to police. There are support services out there that can offer help to you, completely independent of the police, should you need support.

For more information on where to seek support, or how to make a report to police, please visit the police website: https://www.hampshire.police.uk/advice/advice-and-information/rsa/rape-and-sexual-assault/.