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Suspended sentence for man found guilty of sexual assault

A man who masqueraded as a 'Good Samaritan' to a woman who he met at an SE1 pub has been given a suspended sentence for sexual assault.

Suspended sentence for man found guilty of sexual assault
Suspended sentence: Samuel Solomon

40-year-old Samuel Solomon from Sheffield pleaded guilty to one count of sexual assault and one count of voyeurism at Woolwich Crown Court on 2 November.

He was sentenced at the same court on Monday this week to 20 months' imprisonment, suspended for two years, ordered to pay 2,000 in compensation for the victim and 500 court costs, and is to provide 160 hours of unpaid community work and was given a ten-year sexual offender notification order.

Solomon met his victim, a woman in her twenties, by chance at a pub in the Borough on the evening of 22 April 2015.

Both had come to the pub with other people, and the pair began talking and moved on to a different bar.

On leaving the second bar the victim said she did not have enough money to get a cab home so Solomon invited her back to the flat where he was staying in Bermondsey.

Once back at the flat, the victim went to sleep. She awoke in the morning to find herself partially clothed and could not recollect the events of the night before.

Although she had been drinking, the victim did not believe she had drunk excessively.

Solomon was still in the room and chatted to the victim quite casually about being her 'saviour' the night before.

The victim got dressed and left the flat.

Feeling vulnerable due to her lack of memory, she contacted police and was taken to a Haven where she was looked after by specially trained staff.

Tests revealed that she had been the victim of a sexual assault.

Officers traced Solomon and he was arrested. He tried to explain away the events of the night by saying he had acted as a 'Good Samaritan' and that, in his words, despite the victim being excessively drunk, no sexual contact had taken place.

Detectives checked Solomon's phone and found a number of graphic images of the victim and Solomon, proving that sexual contact had occurred.

Solomon was subsequently charged with sexual assault and voyeurism.

Speaking about the impact the assault had on her, the victim said: "The worst thing about it all has been the not really knowing what happened. I now go out with the assumption that all men want to attack me or take advantage of me.

"I was always a very confident and outgoing person with a very active social life. I now feel as though I cannot be myself with anyone and that I cannot behave in a way that is natural to me.

"The whole experience has left me feeling vulnerable and unsafe. I question everyone's motives now, especially men's. I have not been able to have a normal relationship since and I do not anticipate being able to trust anyone enough to have a normal relationship in the near future.

"I hope one day I can put this behind me, but at the moment there is not a day that doesn't go by that I don't think about what happened."

Detective Constable Aidan Kersley, who led the investigation, said: "Solomon showed predatory instincts in carrying out this attack on a vulnerable woman. While it could not be proven that the victim's drink was spiked, it was clear the victim did not consent to sexual activity.

"Solomon took advantage of her and documented his abuse by taking pictures on his phone. I would like thank the victim for having the strength to report this to police and support this prosecution through the courts."

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