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Man jailed for rape nearly 20 years after crime thanks to dedicated detectives

A man has been jailed for six years after detectives secured vital DNA evidence linking him to 2004 rape.

Having previously been unable to identify the suspect, the case was re-opened following a DNA match in relation to another crime in 2018.

Through CCTV and DNA analysis, the suspect was identified as Lindell Campbell, who was also known as Tony.

Detective Constable Tony Anionwu, from the Met’s Specialist Crime Command, said: “Despite it being 18 years since this attack took place, it continues to have a significant impact on the victim, and we are pleased that the man responsible has finally been brought to justice.

“The dedication and perseverance of our officers should act as a warning to anyone else who has committed such an awful crime.”

In October 2004, a woman in her 20s, who was visiting from America, went to a pub alone in Mortlake having been unable to contact a friend.

Having met Campbell in the pub, he offered the victim a place to stay for the night when her friend didn’t arrive and couldn’t be contacted. With few other options due to the time of night, the victim agreed.

Once at Campbell’s home, the defendant insisted the victim share the bed with him, rather than sleep on the sofa as she had suggested.

In the bed, Campbell raped her twice. The victim stayed at the suspect’s home until the morning, fearing what he would do if she tried to leave. In the morning, he walked her to the station.

The victim was then cared for at a facility specialised in caring for victims of rape or sexual assault where staff and a specially trained officer provided advice and assistance.

The victim agreed to assist police by driving around to try and locate the suspect’s address. This was unsuccessful and the case went cold.

In 2018, Campbell was linked to a harassment case in which chewing gum was thrown at someone’s front door and car. DNA tests were performed on the chewing gum, which matched the DNA found at the time of the rape.

However, as Campbell had never been arrested, his DNA was not on the system. He was recognised, although not identified, by the victim of harassment who believed he lived in Burke Close.

Officers compared CCTV from a 2014 incident, to that of several of the harassment incidents, to confirm the identity of Tony Campbell. Once in custody, a fast-time DNA test was carried out, confirming a match to both the rape and harassment cases.

The trial took place at Kingston Crown Court and Campbell was found guilty of two counts of rape on Tuesday, 9 May.

He was sentenced on the same day to six years’ imprisonment to run concurrently. He will remain on the Sex Offenders Register for life.

DC Anionwu added: “We are dedicated to removing those who are violent towards women and girls from the streets of London. Campbell not only sexually assaulted a young, vulnerable woman who was on holiday, but then went on to harass another woman, making her feel uncomfortable in her own home.”

(Source: Metropolitan Police)

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