Julius Branker, 41, was on Wednesday sentenced to 40 years imprisonment by Sexual Offences Court Judge Simone Morris-Ramall after a panel of 12 jurists unanimously found him guilty of rape.
The heinous act occurred on February 15, 2014, in the county of Demerara by Branker. The evidence detailed that armed with a knife, he broke and entered the victim’s house while she was lying in bed with her 18-moth-old toddler and committed the act in the child’s presence.
Branker however, maintained his innocence, saying “I am not guilty of this case.”
The victim’s address to the court was presented by Red Thread Support Officer Halima Khan who emotionally related that the woman continues to deal with the trauma she suffered from the harrowing attack.
“Honestly, I forgive him but you can’t be hurting women so. I get nightmares, I am always shaking. I remember what happened to me and it is a shame. I don’t know how to have relationships,” the mother observed.
“I feel nasty and I cannot get over it. He needs help and he should turn his life over to Christ,” the victim further related.
In handing down her sentence, Justice Ramlall said she considered the nature of the offence and that he violated the woman whereby he broke into her home in the wee hours of the morning and held a knife to her side and threatened her life.
Justice Ramlall opined that Branker also showed disrespect for the jury’s verdict and did not ask the court for mercy or advise his counsel in this regard. She encouraged him to change his life and sentenced him to the serve 40 years in prison but stressed that he will only be eligible for parole after serving 35 years of his sentence.