Man convicted of sexually assaulting three women in Southend over three days

A man has been found guilty of sexually assaulting three woman in the Southend area over the space of three days.

Albert Stone, 30, of no fixed address, attacked the women between March 31 and April 2 2020.

On each occasion Stone grabbed the women from behind and assaulted them.

On March 31, he attacked a woman as she was power walking by the cliff steps at the Cliffs Pavilion. She shouted at him and continued on her walk.

On April 1, he assaulted a woman who had stopped to pick something up, as she was out walking in the Southend area.

Then on April 2, he attacked a woman who had been walking through Chalkwell Park, forcing her to the floor and assaulting her.

He ran off after she kicked out at him and screamed for help.

In each case the women were able to give a good description of Stone meaning officers could link the incidents and following a search of the area he was arrested shortly after the third incident.

He was charged with one count of assault by penetration and three counts of sexual assault.

He denied the charges but was found guilty on Friday July 23 following a trial at Basildon Crown Court.

After his conviction investigating officer Detective Constable Gary Fernon, from the Adult Sexual Assault Investigation Team, said: “Albert Stone is clearly a dangerous sexual predator who targeted women on their own during the national lockdown, knowing that there would be few witnesses to the attacks.

“During interview he showed no remorse for the attacks he carried out and obviously has little respect for the women he’s assaulted.

“I want to praise the bravery of the women involved. The descriptions they provided to the police of Stone were really important in helping us link the attacks and identify him.

“These would have been terrifying incidents and I admire the courage they have shown.”

Stone is due to be sentenced at the same court on August 23.

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Mick Ferris

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