Two time sex attacker jailed for nine years

It happened in 2013

The police have jailed another sex attacker today, sentencing him to nine years in prison.

The 40-year-old former construction manager Liam Harkin sexually assaulted a an 18-year-old girl on Wilmslow Road in Didsbury Village in 2013.

Harkin spoke and had a cigarette with the teenager, but as she walked away he said: “you’re not going anywhere” before dragging her to the floor and raping her.

The victim screamed and he fled the scene as a passer-by walked past.

Harkin, from West Didsbury, left a cigarette at the scene, however he had no previous convictions meaning the police were unable to match the DNA sample retrieved.

Liam Harkin from West Didsbury has been jailed for nine years

The second account of rape happened a year later, in 2014, where Harkin got in a taxi with the victim before entering her home in Stockport and raping her.

The victim of this second incident ran into the street where her neighbours saw Harkin assault her, picking her up and clasping his hand around her mouth.

Harkin was sentenced to nine years and three months at Manchester Crown Court today.

However Recorder Alistair Webster QC said it was unknown as to why Harkin had begun to commit sexual assaults, although his lawyer suggested it is a result of alcohol.

Detective Constables Joanne Walton and Chris Horsfield said: “Harkin has proven himself to be a persistent and dangerous criminal who will target lone, vulnerable women, and the streets are undoubtedly a safer place now that he is behind bars.

“We would like to pay tribute to both women. Not only did they endure a terrible ordeal at Harkin’s hands, but they had the courage to come forward, relive their awful experience during police interviews and waited patiently and with dignity for this day to come.

“Thankfully they were spared the trauma of having to go through a trial and we hope that seeing Harkin convicted of his appalling sexual crimes gives them some sense of justice.”