Brighton rape suspect held over attack in Hove 26 years ago

Posted On 28 Oct 2011 at 4:21 pm

A Brighton man has appeared in court charged with raping a woman in Hove 26 years ago.

Robert Roy Crawford, 48, of The Crestway in Hollingdean, appeared before Brighton magistrates yesterday morning (Thursday 27 October).

He was accused of raping a 28-year-old woman at an address in Highdown Road, Hove, on Friday 9 August 1985.

He was also charged with indecent assault and burgling someone’s home with intent to rape on the same date.

Crawford was remanded in custody and will appear at Lewes Crown Court on Friday 6 January for a preliminary hearing.

He was arrested at his home on Wednesday afternoon (26 October) after a detailed review and investigation of forensic and other evidence.

The case review and investigation lasted several months and was carried out by the Sussex Police Specialist Crime Directorate and the Surrey and Sussex Major Crime Team.

Detective Chief Inspector Nick May said: “We will always take any opportunity to re-examine cases of unresolved serious crime of this type.

“The offence was reported to police on the day it took place and was the subject of intensive police inquiries and media publicity at the time.

“Sussex Police recently decided to review and then reopen the case in the light of forensic advances, including in the field of DNA, in recent years.”

Crawford’s arrest is the second made recently by Sussex Police after a review of unsolved rape cases over the past 30 years.

The other related to a man charged with raping a 20-year-old in Eastbourne in April 1987. The suspect is also in custody awaiting an appearance at Lewes Crown Court on Friday 25 November.

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