Rape victim and family speak out after cop’s sentencing

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Relatives of the young woman who was raped in Antigua by Lee Martin-Cramp, a visiting British cop, said the 15-year jail sentence he got for the offence is nothing compared with the “life sentence” trauma that he inflicted on the now 26-year-old woman.

Speaking with OBSERVER media via email, the family said that they were “disappointed” when they first heard of the penalty for the sex offence which carries a maximum sentence of life in prison.

“We had hoped that the sentence would be longer. Our daughter feels like she has a life sentence of dealing with the trauma from this terrible crime against her,” they wrote.

They added that, however, upon reflection, they are grateful that he will be off the streets for some time. They further indicated that having observed how much effort was put into the process since the May 2015 incident, they have a “great appreciation for the work of the Antiguan police department, the Antiguan government, and to Judge [Iain] Morley, who was exceptional in his management of the trial and sentencing. We were especially touched by the members of the jury and their continued interest in the case all the way through to sentencing.”

The relatives, who hail from Tennessee, said they hope that victims of any form of sexual assault would learn from their daughter’s case and be as brave and report the matter to the police.

They added, “We hope that our daughter, coming forward and going through the judicial process, will bring some light to a crime that so often remains in the shadows because of the way victims can be shamed and blamed when they take the brave step to come forward.”

The family also had a message for the residents of Antigua and Barbuda, saying they ought to be proud that the country pursued the extradition of the recently-sacked Metropolitan cop who, like his victim, was 22 years old at the time of the rape.

Read more in today’s newspaper

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