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17 FEB 2016DEPRAVED Mark Armstrong abducted his 15-year-old victim as she walked home from school threatened her with a knife and then repeatedly raped her.
Cruel mark Armstrong and police at the scene of the attackCruel mark Armstrong and police at the scene of the attack
A SEX predator who snatched a schoolgirl off the street and subjected her a 32-hour ordeal of rape and abuse was yesterday jailed for life.
Mark Armstrong abducted his 15-year-old victim as she walked home from school threatened her with a knife and then repeatedly raped her.
Yesterday, at the High Court in Glasgow judge Lady Wise told 26-year-old Armstrong that his actions were “cruel, depraved and inhumane.”
She ordered him to be placed on a lifelong restriction order, imposed a punishment part of four years before he can apply for parole.
However she added: “There is no assumption or expectation you will be released then.”
Lady Wise told Armstrong he would remain in prison until he is no longer deemed a danger to the public.
The judge praised Armstrong’s schoolgirl victim saying “her bravery and resilience was quite remarkable” but added the long term consequences for her were unknown.
Defence counsel Michael Anderson told the court that Armstrong had been smoking cannabis from the age of eight and drinking Buckfast at 10.
Mr Anderson added: “He says that he deserves a long sentence. For what it is worth, and I recognise it may not be worth a lot, he articulates his regret at what has happened.”
The court heard that after abducting the girl, who cannot be named for legal reasons, Armstrong warned her he had a flick knife and would use it if she tried to escape or scream for help.
He strangled her and stripped her and subjected her to a brutal prolonged sex attack in the grounds of a derelict cottage.
He raped her as she lay in thorns., while she pleaded with him to stop.
Armstrong led the girl back to his home in Dunfermline in Fife and continued to subject her to sexual abuse and rape. The victim later said it happened “over and over again”.Advocate depute Jane Farquharson, prosecuting, said: “The accused only spoke to tell her what to do, to shut up or stop shivering.”
“The victim describes feeling scared and increasingly angry and that she just wanted to go home.”
During the lengthy ordeal Armstrong also donned surgical gloves to wash her private parts and scrubbed her with a kitchen sponge. He also tried to get her to smoke cannabis.
At one stage he took her back to the scene of the original rape after saying she could go home, but instead of letting her go he took her back to his house to renew the sexual assaults.
The victim’s mother had reported her missing after searching for her daughter. Police who were searching the derelict cottage at Kingseat Road found the girl’s T-shirt, bra and broken glasses and informed her mother.
Miss Farquharson said: “At this stage or course, the complainer’s whereabouts were still unknown.”
Only hours later did unemployed Armstrong finally free his captive and return her phone. The girl later told police: “I just wanted to call my mum.”
The victim was able to describe a wheel at the entrance to Lochore Meadows country park and was reunited with her mother.
Miss Farquharson said her mother described seeing “a little figure standing next to the wheel”.
She added: “It didn’t look like her daughter she said because it was so small.”
Police who arrived at the scene described seeing the mother hugging the girl who was “shaking, crying and occasionally howling”.
The victim had facial injuries that left her unrecognisable to officers from the photos of her they had been given in the missing person inquiry.
Armstrong, of Macbeth Road, Dunfermline admitted abducting, assaulting and raping the girl between March 12 and 14 this year.
He also pled guilty to a string of assault and robbery offences committed against women in the Fife town in the days leading up to the attack on the teenager.
He showed no emotion as he was led away to begin his sentence.
“It was thanks to the incredible bravery and determination of his young victim, in providing as much information as possible to police, that they were able to apprehend Armstrong so quickly and also uncover evidence linking him to the earlier attacks on the three other women.
“We would encourage all victims of sexual crimes to come forward and report them. They will be treated with professionalism and sensitivity by the police and our expert prosecutors and we will do all in our power to deliver justice.”