An accused rapist carried out a series of “shocking and depraved” attacks on 11 women and children – ranging in age from 11 to 71 – across England during a two-week crime spree ending when he climbed a tree to evade arrest, according to reports.
Joseph McCann, 34, is charged with 37 offenses, including rape, kidnapping and false imprisonment, against the alleged victims, who were grabbed from the street at knifepoint and forced into his car amid threats of being hurt or killed, the Evening Standard reported.
The Old Bailey criminal court in London heard that the suspect told one of the women that he would “never release her” as he raped her repeatedly, according to the BBC.
One 21-year-old woman was grabbed at knifepoint as she walked home from a Watford nightclub April 21, prosecutor John Price said, adding that she was released later that morning in a “state of great distress.”
Another woman was abducted as she walked home in Walthamstow, east London, just after midnight four days later, when McCann allegedly told the 25-year-old to stop screaming or he would stab her.
The woman was raped “many times” in various locations over the next 14 hours and subjected to acts of “shocking depravity and violence,” the court heard.
“He made her call him ‘daddy’ and say that she was a child. At one point the man parked the car near to a school, saying that he wanted to make her rape a child,” Price said.
Later in the day, as he was still holding the 25-year-old prisoner, he abducted a 21-year-old woman as she walked along a street in Edgware, north London, with her sister, the court heard.
Surveillance video of the woman being thrown into a vehicle in broad daylight was played to the jury.
Price said the woman “suffered a similar fate” to the 25-year-old woman before the pair managed to escape while in Watford, where McCann had booked a hotel room for two nights.
He told the jury that one of the women hit their captor over the head with a vodka bottle and that some construction workers “bravely” intervened to prevent them from being recaptured.
In one case, McCann allegedly conned his way into a woman’s Greater Manchester home, where he tied her to a bed and raped her 17-year-old daughter and 11-year-old son.
The court heard that McCann then abducted and raped a 71-year-old woman and also sexually assaulted a 13-year-old girl before both managed to escape at a gas station on the M6 highway.
McCann was said to also have kidnapped two girls in the back of a car he stole from a woman when he was spotted in Congleton, Cheshire, on May 5, and chased by police.
He eventually crashed and fled on foot, leaving behind the two “frightened and distressed” girls, and then stole a mountain bike and later jumped into a taxi.
When cops finally stopped the cab in a village near Stoke, McCann fled into a field.
“A cordon was placed around the field and the force helicopter was deployed. The police found him, and he climbed a tree,” Price said.
After a brief stand-off, the suspect was finally collared and charged with a slew of crimes, including false imprisonment, kidnapping, rape, causing or inciting a person to engage in sexual activity without consent, causing or inciting a child under 13 to engage in sexual activity and assault by penetration.
He has denied the charges.