Bedford man who sexually assaulted teen during terrifying home invasion at rural property will serve 'years not months' in prison

Irvine was found guilty at Luton Crown Court
Irvine was found guilty at Luton Crown Court

A man who sexually assaulted a teenage girl in a terrifying home invasion attack has been told he faces 'years not months' behind bars.

Aaron Irvine, 19, of Thor Drive, Bedford, was found guilty at Luton Crown Court today (Thursday), of sexual assault, and trespass with intent to commit sexual assault, following an eight-day trial.

He pleaded guilty to common assault and possession of an offensive weapon.

At around 2.45pm on Wednesday 2 January, a 17-year-old girl answered a knock at the door of a house she was visiting in a rural mid-Bedfordshire village, to see a man dressed head-to-toe in black, including a balaclava and rubber gloves, holding a knife at chest height.

The court heard that Irvine made his way inside the house, indicating that in return for sexual acts, he wouldn’t steal anything from the home, and then proceeded to sexually assault her 17-year-old friend.

The attack continued into a bedroom at the property, where he further assaulted both girls, and when one tried to call the police, he took the phone from her.

The girls managed to escape from the house to flag down a passing car for help, and the police were called.

Irvine was identified by one of the girls as he walked away from the house, and following a short pursuit by officers across a field, Irvine was arrested.

His rucksack was found to contain a lock knife and a hunting knife, rope, tape, wet wipes, latex gloves and a lock pick.

A search of his home revealed detailed handwritten notes of his plans to commit a sexual assault on an unknown woman in her own home.

Detective Constable Kate Robinson, investigating, said: “Irvine displayed a disturbing and calculated level of behaviour as he researched and planned, and then put his deplorable strategy into action. He has shown himself to be a dangerous sexual predator.

“He now faces, as the Judge has indicated today, years rather than months in prison, for his terrifying and degrading actions that afternoon.

“Thankfully his victims were able to break free, and he was quickly apprehended before the situation could escalate further.

“I applaud the bravery of these two young girls in coming forward, and would like to thank their families for their unwavering commitment and support in this case. I hope that this conviction will bring them some comfort and, with appropriate support, allow them to move past what has happened.”

Irvine will be sentenced in October.

Victims of rape and sexual assault can receive support and guidance from Bedfordshire Police and partner agencies, including the Sexual Assault Referral Centre (SARC), as well as support through the criminal investigation process.

Reports of sexual assault, even if non-recent, can be made to the police by calling 101. You can also contact Bedfordshire’s Sexual Assault Referral Centre (SARC) the Emerald Centre, by visiting www.emeraldcentre.org, emailing info@emeraldcentre.org or calling 01234 897052.

Always call 999 in an emergency.