Devon

Darren Edwards jailed for rape of teenage girls

A Devon man has been jailed for 22 years for raping two 15-year-old girls.

Darren Edwards, 40, had tried to wash off forensic evidence from his body in a police station cell after being arrested, Exeter Crown Court was told.

The first of two victims contacted police after Edwards raped her in July 2010. He raped his second victim in Bideford a number of times.

Edwards, who was from Brookfield Street, Bideford, had denied seven charges but was convicted by a jury.

Water from toilet

The court heard that, after being arrested, police had told Edwards not to try to clean himself, so that forensic evidence would be preserved.

Prosecutor Sean Brunton said that Edwards had tried to wash himself with water in front of an officer.

The court was told he had tried to use water from a toilet and from a drink he was given.

The footage, which was caught on CCTV cameras, was shown to the jury.

During a police interview, Edwards said the first alleged victim was a "good storyteller" and claimed she had taken sexual advantage of him while he must have been asleep.

Judge Graham Cottle jailed him for eight years for the rape of the first teenager and 14 years for the rape of the second girl, to run consecutively.

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