I have decided to honour the beautiful young girl who died. I had really liked her.I had spent the time talking to her.
I had believed she was probably being treated for cancer at the time, as she was being tube fed,
I had tried to lift her spirits, She had affected me profoundly. My ex sister-in-law had later told me that she had herself been raped by this girl’s father twice at twelve years old.
By this time his daughter was dead, i kept her death announcement, She had died in the bath. I had encouraged my ex sister-in-law to report her rape.. I believe it was the early 2000s. She reported it and he had been taken in for questioning but released.
In the meantime even after being told the story, my mother-in-law had continued to entertain him. I made my niece promise never to stay in the house with him after the incident where he had arrived while she was there. I had received minimal support from my former husband. The case had eventually gone to court and my ex sister-in-law had needed to write a victim impact statement. She came to do it round our house but in the end had written nothing that day.
Some years later she had been contacted by the police to say another girl had corroborated her story. She had never even known the other girl’s name. The police had made sure that the identity of the other girl was protected.
My mother-in-law had also been summoned to court, which she was none too happy about.
He had eventually (according to my former sister-in-law) received a twenty year sentence, which I now know is pretty standard in these cases, I know now 20 years is not an unusual sentence for rape having done legal studies! I have seen sentencing guidelines.
It will not bring back his daughter but it appears at least a measure of justice has been done. It will not restore any lives he may have destroyed.
I only met his daughter the once. Her mother had appeared to be a lovely woman. I understand now how easy it is to be duped by characters like her father, although he had made my skin crawl right away which had caused me to keep him at a distance even before I had children!
However I had not been able to get my head round the idea that my former mother-in-)aw had knowingly exposed her children and grandchildren to him.
I was told she had said,
“Why should suffer for something which happened thirty years ago?”