A 77-year-old man is behind bars, after being found guilty of a string of sexual abuse offences that started almost half a century ago in Market Harborough.
The abuse started when Dennis Damon, then 28, raped his victim at an address in the town when she was only eight years old.
But decades later the victim - now in her 50s - found the courage to come forward and speak to police.
Damon was found guilty eight counts of rape and two counts of indecent assault at Leicester Crown Court yesterday (Thursday).
Damon, of Nene Road, Higham Ferrers, Northamptonshire, was jailed for 16 years and was placed on the sex offenders register for life for committing the offences between 1969 and 1976.
He was also issued with a sexual harm prevention order (SHPO).
The abuse started when his victim was eight, and continued as she entered her teenage years, with Damon ensuring that both he and his victim were alone in an attempt to make sure that his horrific crimes would not be uncovered.
Damon even took his victim on day trips to Norfolk, using the excursions as an opportunity to exert his control over her. When the abuse started, he threatened his victim, not to tell anyone.
Detective Constable Rachel Donaghey, the officer in the case, said: “Dennis Damon is now paying the price for the years of suffering that he inflicted.
“His victim, who was just a child, has had to cope with the psychological effect this has had for more than 40 years.
“He also told her that she wouldn’t be believed. Damon knew that as an eight-year-old, this would frighten her and allow him to continue his reign of terror over her.”
“However, she hasn’t been silenced. She found the courage to come forward and speak to police about her horrific ordeal, which has led to Damon being brought to justice.”
There are a number of different agencies who are able to offer independent help and support to victims of sexual offences in Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland.
Further information on these services and details on who to contact if you have been a victim of a sexual offence can be found by visiting http://leics.police.uk