Man sentenced to 13 years after pleading guilty to serious assault and kidnap charges in Eastleigh

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A 20-year-old man has today (12 May) been sentenced to 13 years 4 months after admitting a number of offences following a serious assault in Eastleigh in August 2020.

Jeremy Blake Simmons of no fixed abode pleaded guilty to one count of assault causing actual bodily harm, one count of threats to kill and one count of kidnap at Southampton Crown Court on 9 September 2020.

Following a three-day trial at Southampton Crown Court on Wednesday 10 March, Simmons was also found guilty of kidnap with intent to commit a sexual offence.

Southampton Crown Court heard how Simmons attacked a woman at around 2.15am on Tuesday 4 Augusts 2020 as she walked along Leigh Road and then dragged her into Leigh Road Park.

During the incident, he assaulted the woman, made threats to kill and kidnapped her with intent to commit a sexual offence.

Simmons pleaded guilty to these offences and was handed a sentence of 13 years and 4 months imprisonment today (12 May)

Following the sentencing, Detective Constable Sean Owens from Hampshire Constabulary’s Amberstone team, said: “This was a truly harrowing and unprovoked attack on a vulnerable woman late at night. At a time where she should feel safe walking home within her local community, she was subjected to a serious assault.

“I would like to commend the victim for her courage that she has shown throughout the whole investigation. This was no doubt an awful ordeal which she was faced to re-live; but we must praise her for doing so, as it is not always easy to do so. I would also like to say thank you to the CCTV operator who alerted police to the attack – undoubtedly their quick thinking ensured that the victim was not subjected to a more severe and violent attack.

“The investigators on the case, who form part of our specialist Amberstone unit which handle cases such as these, showed great tenacity in getting us to this point.

“Hampshire Constabulary is dedicated to getting justice for victims and ensuring Eastleigh is a safe place to live.

“I hope this sentence today goes someway to giving the woman closure and reassures her, and the communities in Hampshire, that justice has been served.”