Rape victim aged 5 writes to police who failed her and asks: ‘Why did you let me down?’
The little girl, who is still waiting for justice, told officers: ‘Something very bad happened and it was your job to make sure he was punished. But you didn’t do your job’
The youngster was raped by the 12-year-old son of a family friend in 2011, but more than three years later she and her family are still waiting for justice.
The case was brought to light after it emerged the little girl, now aged eight, had written a heartbreaking letter to officers about what had happened to her.
Today, the police and crime commissioner for Essex has said he is “deeply sorry” for how his force failed the child.
In her letter she wrote: “When I was five something very bad happened and it was your job to make sure he was properly dealt with and punished. But you didn’t do your job and you let me down.
“This makes me sad, upset and angry because I am only a little girl.”
“I am very disapointed [sic] in you… I hope one day soon he gets what he deserves.”
Speaking to The Mail On Sunday, the girl’s parents said that Essex Police made a series of blunders investigating the attack.
The boy admitted the offence in a recorded interview and was given a youth caution, but officers wrongly claimed that they had reported the case to the Crown Prosecution Service, failed to have the rapist’s name added to the Sex Offenders Register and neglected to take fingerprints, DNA samples or photographs, the newspaper said.
The little girl’s letter went on: “Did you do this on purpose because he was 12? I trusted you to push me up but instead you pushed me down.
“I thought police are ment [sic] to be good and catch the bad people but you didn’t. So you are in the wrong and should know better.”
Crime Commisioner Nick Alston said the case had highlighted the force’s “profound failure”, adding: “It has left a victim and her family utterly bereft of justice. Leads to other potential offences were not properly investigated at the time.
“Furthermore, it may have caused people in our county who need the help of Essex Police wondering if they can trust them.”
Mr Alston said he became aware of the case in 2013 and immediately discussed the matter with the deputy chief and chief constable.
In April last year, the force referred itself to the Independent Police Complaints Commission and disciplinary action was taken against a number of officers.
Adding he had met with the parents on several occasions, he said: “Like them I am determined that what went wrong is fully understood and that everything is done that can be done to prevent a repetition.”
Mr Alston added: “Much of what needed to be fixed may well prove to have been to do with the attitude of officers.
“We must build a police service where every officer is motivated by the prevention of harm rather than the mindless chasing of targets, and that the impact on victims and their families is always kept at the centre of any decision taking, however difficult.
“I feel deeply sorry for the victim and her family. Essex Police should not have let them down but they did.
“It is my role to ensure that all the actions taken subsequently have been conducted diligently, and especially that what was wrong that can be put right, has been put right.
“Most sadly, for the victim the innocence of childhood cannot be restored