Kirkcaldy man jailed after forcing his way into a pensioner's home with the intention of raping her

A man who forced his way into a terrified pensioner's home with the intention of raping her has been jailed for seven years.
The High Court in EdinburghThe High Court in Edinburgh
The High Court in Edinburgh

Simon Johnston (39), subjected the 71-year-old woman to a violent ordeal which lasted for several hours at a property in Kirkcaldy in June 2015.

The High Court in Edinburgh heard how Johnston grabbed the female by the hair and forced her from her kitchen to a bedroom.

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On Friday, judge Lady Stacey told Johnston that the only sentence available to the court was a custodial one. She also ordered that he be placed under supervision by the authorities for two years following his release from custody.

She added: “You have been convicted of a very serious offence. I consider you to be a very serious risk to public safety.

“I must therefore impose a sentence of imprisonment on you.”

Johnston, also of Kirkcaldy, was convicted of assault with intent to rape following proceedings at the High Court in Edinburgh last month.

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Sentence had been deferred for the court to obtain reports about his character.

During proceedings last month, the court heard how Johnston forced his way into the woman’s house last year.

The court heard how the victim was left petrified during the June 20 incident.

The female told the court how Johnston ordered her to shut the windows and instructed her to be quiet.

He then threatened her with a blade.

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The court heard Johnston called the woman by another name when he came into the house.

The court heard that Johnston eventually left the property.

Giving evidence, Johnston admitted to visiting the woman’s home. He said she was vulnerable and that he wanted to help her.

The crook wept uncontrollably at times during his evidence.

He said that he had spent a pleasant time with her. However, he told defence solicitor advocate Jim Stephenson that the mood changed.

Johnston said the woman’s mood towards him changed and she accused him of being a murderer and a rapist.

He told the court: “It’s a disgusting thing to be called.”

Johnston told the court that he left the property.

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The following day, he discovered the police were looking for somebody with his description who held a woman against her will in Kirkcaldy.

He said he had been reading a news website at the time.

Johnston said: “I was disgusted at what I read. The description matched me with regards to everything – right to the jeans I was wearing and I was upset because it wasn’t true.”

Johnston admitted to touching a knife in the woman’s house.

He said he did this because the blade was coloured green.

Johnston said: “Being a Celtic fan, I just like the colour green. It was an accidental touch.”

In her closing speech, prosecution lawyer Susanne Tanner told the jury there was compelling evidence to convict Johnston.

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The court heard that her evidence could be corroborated by the fact that she had suffered a total of 28 injuries.

Medical experts concluded that the nature of the injuries suggested that she had been assaulted.

On Friday, Mr Stephenson told the court that his client accepted that he was going to be sent to prison.

He added: “I would ask your ladyship to take his very good work record into consideration.”

Lady Stacey also placed Johnston on the Sex Offenders Register.

He will remain on it for the rest of his life.