Daniel Dickson, a 31-year-old Englishman, was sentenced this week after previously being found guilty of repeatedly raping a woman while also carving her initials into her back with a knife. Dickson told the jury at the Teesside Crown Court that he was actually encouraged by the victim to use the knife during sex, but nobody believed that.
The prosecutor in the case said that Dickson told the victim "he was going to brand her," after he showed her the weapon. The victim, who was in court to watch him be sentenced, also wrote an impact statement intended specifically for the judge in the trial.
Though Dickson pleaded guilty to "unlawful wounding," his defense also tried to garner sympathy for him by playing up the six years he was in the army, saying that he served in "Bosnia, Afghanistan and other dangerous conflict zones before leaving and taking up work as an electrician." He further said Dickson only used the knife during sex for "experimentation."
Ultimately, judge Tony Briggs sided with the jury. "You pleaded guilty to unlawful wounding on the basis that it was at her request to carve her initials on her back," Briggs said. "It’s perfectly plain that the jury did not accept that particular account, and neither do I."
Dickson was sentenced to seven years in prison. Those seven years are for the rape, with another concurrent sentence of a year tacked on for carving the woman. He was also given an "indefinite sexual harm prevention order," which bars him from doing anything to get in touch with the victim. Not surprisingly, he will also be registered as a sex offender for life.