Rapist seen laughing as he’s arrested after more than 30 years due to chance DNA match

Paul Shakespeare dragged the woman into a bush and raped her in April 1990. He was linked to the crime following a DNA match from another offence and was arrested in August this year

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Rapist arrested attacking teenage girl in over 30 years ago

A rapist laughed at a police officer when he was told he would be arrested for the rape of a teen more than 30 years ago.

Paul Shakespeare, 66, dragged the woman into a bush and raped her while she walked her dog on a footpath in Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, in April 1990.

He was caught 31 years later after a DNA sample was taken during a separate offence where he had exposed himself to a woman and was found with a knife.

A video has emerged of the moment police entered his house on August 15 to arrest him on suspicion of rape.

In the chilling clip, after an officer tells Shakespeare he would be arrested, the rapist can be seen laughing.

Paul Shakespeare laughed when a police officer told him he would be arrested on suspicion of rape

The police officer said: “Paul, I’m gonna be arresting you this evening on suspicion of rape, okay?”

After Shakespeare laughed, the officer continued: “No, listen. You have been linked via forensic evidence to the rape of a female which took place in Cheltenham on Sunday, April 29, 1990.”

Gloucestershire Police said: “A full DNA profile was recovered at the time of the incident, but following numerous attempts over the years to identify the suspect there was no DNA match.

Shakespeare admitted raping a teenager more than 30 years ago in Cheltenham



“However, earlier this year Shakespeare was arrested out of county for being in possession of a knife and his DNA was taken and added to a national database.”

Shakespeare appeared in Gloucester Crown Court through a video link while he was remanded in custody at Durham Prison.

He pleaded guilty to raping the woman in 1990 and possessing the weapon.

He was unable to stand and uses a wheelchair, meaning he will have to be sentenced at Bristol Crown Court on January 17 as Gloucester Crown Court does not have disabled facilities.

A sharpened stick with a nail driven through it used by the rapist



Judge Ian Lawrie QC said it was “extraordinary” that the DNA evidence was able to identify Shakespeare despite the decades that have gone by.

The officer in charge of the case, Detective Constable Simone Bowley said: “Firstly I would like to commend the victim as her bravery and courage has been phenomenal right from the day this horrific crime took place, through to present day.

“She has had to wait for more than 30 years for Shakespeare to admit his abhorrent crimes.

“The case has been reopened and reviewed over this time, and she has continued to work with us in the hope that one day he will be caught and brought to justice.

“This was a deeply horrifying incident which happened to a teenage girl who was walking her dog on a late Sunday afternoon. The impact of this crime was felt within the wider community too, as people were fearful of what took place day.

“We all had hope that we would be able to identify the man responsible for this, and I am glad that day has finally come. I have updated the victim on today’s outcome and she was relieved to hear the news.

“In Gloucestershire we have a dedicated Rape and Serious Sexual Offences team and I would urge anyone who has been the victim of a sexual assault, whether recent or non-recent, to please contact police or other support agencies and report it.”


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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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