Rapist jailed after fighting for justice by daughter born following attack | UK News
A rapist whose 13-year-old victim became pregnant in the 1970s has been jailed for 11 years, decades after the crime, following a successful prosecution by the girl conceived in the attack.
Carvel Bennett, 74, was convicted of raping the teenager in Birmingham Crown Court on Monday after a three-day trial. She was at his home when the rape took place because she had been asked to babysit her children.
The woman who filed the lawsuits is named Daisy and was separated from her birth mother – who turned 14 two days before the birth – when she was seven days old and adopted when she was seven months old.
DNA tests on Daisy and her biological parents confirmed that Bennett was her biological father.
In what is considered the first such case, Bennett was found by Daisy, now 45.
Sentencing judge Martin Hurst acknowledged the profound effects Bennett’s rape had on the lives of the victim and her daughter. He praised Daisy for her “hard” work in bringing Bennett to justice and said the lawsuits would not have taken place without her determination to seek justice.
“She is undoubtedly as much of a victim in this area as her mother,” he said. He told the court it was a “tragic story” and said the jury pierced the lies of Bennett trying to blame his victim for provocative behavior, evidence the judge said was “clearly concocted “.
The rape victim’s statement was read by prosecution attorney Peter Glenser. “Over the years I have realized that when you are a child you have no voice or control over your life,” she said. “My life was already traumatic due to neglect and other sexual abuse. I was told not to say anything, I knew no one would care or believe me. I got disgusted with myself and have done so for many years. I thought it was my fault. I carried his shame even though I felt the shame was mine.
Daisy read her statement in court and described the trauma of being a black child adopted into a white family. “I felt like I wanted to be invisible because of being black and adopted, and not knowing anything about my past.”
While Daisy and her birth mother are in touch, they said in court that due to the circumstances their relationship was difficult.
In her victim impact statement, Daisy’s birth mother said, “I met my daughter, but due to the circumstances it was difficult. What I will say about my daughter is that she has relentlessly pursued justice for many years. I have three other daughters, they were my saviors.
In her statement, Daisy said: “Carvel Bennett, you have caused total carnage, your act of violence has decimated any potential relationship between my birth mother and me because you chose to rape a child.”
She added: “I am more than proof, I am more than a witness, I am more than a ‘product’ of rape. I am not your shame and I will not bear the shame and horror of what you have chosen to do. This legal process caused further complexities in the relationship between me and my birth mother, in my opinion a deeper breakup, which is quite tragic. Because you chose to rape a child, we always pay the price.
Daisy’s mother, who has suffered from multiple sclerosis for 16 years, said, “I just want this to end. I just want to live the rest of my life in peace.