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Lincolnshire gym instructor accused of attempted rape

By Sleaford Target  |  Posted: December 06, 2013

Lincolnshire gym instructor accused of attempted rape

A gym instructor is facing jail for the attempted rape a 20-year-old woman.

The jury at Lincoln Crown Court took less than 50 minutes to return a guilty verdict against James Taylor following the attack in Holdingham, Sleaford.

Caroline Bradley, prosecuting, told the jury the woman was talking to her boyfriend on her mobile phone as she walked along Lincoln Road when Taylor grabbed her by the neck, forced her to the ground and tried to rape her.

He also stole her mobile phone and her purse which he discarded nearby before fleeing.

The woman's boyfriend heard the attack over the phone and then called 999.

The victim made her way to a nearby house where she received help from the occupants until police arrived at the scene.

Taylor was arrested seven weeks later after tests revealed the presence of his DNA on the woman's clothing.

Miss Bradley said that Taylor answered no comment to a string of questions and refused to even explain why he was in Sleaford.

Taylor, 26, of Kenilworth Road, Grantham, denied attempted rape on May 4 but was found guilty by the jury. He had previously admitted robbery.

He admitted he sexually assaulted the woman but denied he intended to rape her.

Taylor, who told the jury he had previously served a six-year jail sentence for robbery, said: "I was looking to raise some cash. I saw her on the phone and at that point I decided to take the phone."

He said after taking the phone, the woman asked for it back.

He said: "I pushed her and she screamed. I then took her to the floor by the neck and her clothing and covered her mouth."

Taylor said he became sexually aroused and indecently touched the woman but claimed he did not try to have sex with her. He said he did not answer questions during his police interview because he was in shock at what he had done.

He told the jury: "I felt ashamed. I was sorry for her and her family and for my partner and her family. I felt I'd lost everything I'd worked hard for through something that shouldn't have happened."

Judge Michael Heath remanded Taylor into custody and adjourned sentence to a later date.