A young mother was condemned by a judge as being “wholly malicious” as she was jailed for falsely claiming her former step father had abducted and raped her.
Jodie Simpson was led weeping and wailing to the cells yesterday after she had alleged to police that newly-wed Shaun Longden had carried out two horrific attacks on her when, in fact, he had not even seen her for years.
Judge Jonathan Rose told Simpson, 22, that her lies had done harm to genuine rape victims of the future.
And jailing her for 21 months, he said: “You decided to make allegations that were false, unfounded and wholly malicious.”
Mr Longden was arrested at his house in front of his wife in a 2am swoop by police and spent 14 hours in custody, during which time he was strip- searched and intimately examined as officers investigated Simpson’s allegations, prosecutor Simon Haring told Bradford Crown Court yesterday.
Police also seized his computer, containing his recent wedding photos, and his phones, as part of their investigation and contacted his employer to check out his alibi.
Mr Longden was in tears when he was bailed and allowed home by police after what Judge Rose described as his “terrifying” arrest.
Mr Haring said Mr Longden was married to Simpson’s mother years ago but they divorced and he had not seen her since she was 11.
In December, 2009, Simpson, of New Street, Idle, Bradford, made allegations of rape, not involving Mr Longden, claiming multiple offenders and locations.
In January, 2010, Simpson told the police Mr Longden had abducted her and, with four other men and a women, subjected her to a horrific gang rape.
Days later she again called the force’s specialist rape squad, Operation Topaz, saying Mr Longden had gang raped her for a second time, with three other men.
The court heard that officers had early doubts about her stories but they dutifully carried out a thorough and diligent investigation.
Seventeen officers were involved and 264 hours wasted, along with 62 hours of support staff time at a cost of £17,000 to the West Yorkshire force.
On January 22, Simpson’s flatmate called police to tell them she might be lying.
Simpson had been unco-operative when interviewed and her lies began unravelling, Mr Haring said.
On February 24, Mr Longden was released from police bail as an entirely innocent man.
Simpson pleaded guilty to two offences of perverting the course of justice.
Mr Haring said Mr Longden endured “shame and paranoia” during his ordeal which continued to affect his life.
He has installed CCTV cameras at his home to monitor his own whereabouts in case it ever happened to him again and he even keeps all receipts to maintain a record of where he has been, Mr Haring said.
In mitigation, Simpson’s solicitor advocate, Alistair Bateman, said she had a history of self harm and mental health problems but she was of previous good character and now had a child and a job.