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Serial sex pest targeted four women in one month

ByReport2

Nov 18, 2023

Four women were randomly targeted by a serial sex offender while going about their daily lives in St Helens.

Govar Abdul-Rahman, 28, preyed on four women in the course of a single month. On June 26 2022, he sexually assaulted a woman at Queens Park leisure centre after following her around the swimming pool and into the sauna and steam room. On June 29, he sexually assaulted another woman at the same place, again preying on her after following her into the sauna.

At around 3am on July 17 2022, he followed an 18-year-old woman into an alleyway, where he attempted to kiss her before pushing her into a wall and groping her twice.

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Finally, on July 24 2022, he scaled a fence and sneaked into an 18-year-old woman's supported living accommodation with the intention of sexually assaulting her. When the woman woke up and saw him standing over her bed, he panicked and fled through the window he had entered by. But he returned to the flat a week later in the early hours of July 31, and once again tried to get in through the window before being caught red-handed by the woman, who came to investigate the suspicious noise.

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Abdul-Rahman, formerly of Silkstone Street, St Helens, appeared at Liverpool Crown Court on November 16, to be sentenced for four counts of sexual assault, trespass with intent to commit sexual assault, attempted trespass with intent to commit sexual assault, and voyeurism.

Victim statements from the four women were read to the court. The first victim, who was attending the swimming pool with her daughter when Abdul-Rahman assaulted her on June 26, said: "I do think that since this incident my mental health has deteriorated and I worry a lot more about being around men. Because of my mental health, I used the gym as a lifeline, but I get nervous thinking about going now.

"Since this incident I have not been able to go swimming at the leisure centre. I used to go to various classes but since this incident I do not feel comfortable enough to go back to the pool and I don't feel confident in going. "

The second victim said: "Sport has been a big part of my life as I started when I was just four years old. It made me be the person I was. I was confident, outgoing, and never afraid of doing anything. After this incident happened, I didn't go to any gym for 11 months, and I have still not been to that swimming pool.

"It has affected my everyday life. I feel I don't trust people like I used to. I'm a much quieter person who chooses to stay in and be safe rather than go out and socialise with friends."

The third victim, who was on a night out with friends when she was attacked, said: "I don't feel that I can trust many people like I used to. I used to feel confident but now I have developed some insecurity and I'm finding it difficult to overcome what has happened. I have cried hysterically in front of friends and family when out in busy places. These emotions are now to me and I don't know how to control them. I have never experienced this before. I used to love being out with friends."

The fourth victim, who was sleeping soundly when Abdul-Raham crept through her window, said the traumatic incident had worsened her struggles with anxiety and depression.

She said: "I moved into my flat to try and make it a safe place to be. This incident has brought back trauma I have spent years trying to heal from. I no longer have the flat as a safe space, which has knocked me back even further.

"Since the incident I felt panicked and upset when I have to go back to the flat. When I had to return after the incident I burst into tears. I no longer feel the flat is safe space for me. I found it difficult to get to sleep and I had to stay at a family member's address just to get away from the flat. If I hear any noses in the night it wakes me up and puts me on edge. I no longer like going outside as I no longer have any trust in people."

Abdul-Rahman was sentenced a total of 20 months in prison for the four sexual assaults, and seven years with an extended five years on licence for trespass with intent to commit sexual assault, attempted trespass with intent to commit sexual assault, and voyeurism, to be served consecutively.

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