Teenager followed through Scarborough town centre and raped at 3am - Mitko Naskov denies being the attacker

A young woman was dragged into an alleyway and raped by a man who had followed her through the streets of Scarborough, a court heard.

By Court reporter
Friday, 25th January 2019, 9:32 am
Updated Friday, 25th January 2019, 10:08 am
The trial is being heard at York Crown Court.
The trial is being heard at York Crown Court.

The attacker crept up on the woman and lifted her off her feet, before forcing her into an alleyway near the Scarborough foreshore. She was then raped as she begged the man to stop, a jury at York Crown Court was told.

The rapist, who forced her into a corner, ignored her pleas and tried to rape her again, said prosecutor Michael Collins.

After hearing the victim screaming for help, three women came to her aid and the rapist scarpered.

Sign up to our daily The Scarborough News Today newsletter

They called police who arrived at the scene to find the teenage woman in an utterly “distressed” state.

The attack was caught on the CCTV cameras of a nearby pub and the footage was handed over to police, who launched a widespread investigation which included tracking the victim’s movements in the hours leading up to the attack.

The investigation led police to the door of Mitko Naskov, a 19-year-old Bulgarian national living in Scarborough.

Naskov, of Pavilion Square, was arrested later that day and charged with rape and attempted rape.

He denied the allegations, claiming he was not the rapist, and appeared for trial on Thursday.

The jury was shown CCTV footage gleaned from various locations in Scarborough town centre which showed the movements of both Naskov and the woman in the hours leading up to the attack in the early hours of August 12 last year.

The footage showed Naskov and two other east-European males entering various licensed premises. The victim was on her own after a falling-out and was said to be “upset” when she left a bar and found herself walking the streets on her own when, just before 3am in Newborough, a man began following her.

Mr Collins said the man quickened his step, “going from a walk to a jog”, as he closed in on the woman, who cannot be named for legal reasons.

“He catches up with the victim, picks (her) up and take her down an alleyway,” said Mr Collins.

The prosecutor said it was the Crown’s belief that the attacker was Naskov, who had been wearing Bermuda-style shorts and a baseball cap.

He said the three women who went to the victim’s aid saw a man wearing a baseball cap and shorts running from the scene.

Mr Collins said that, “for reasons unknown”, the man took off his shirt as he ran away, exposing a large tattoo on his back.

“They heard the sounds of a woman in distress; they heard her calling for help,” added Mr Collins.

“They went to her and what they found was a timid, scared and semi-naked (woman) who (said) that she had been raped.”

One of the women chased the attacker through the town centre but he got away.

Police arrived at the scene and found the traumatised woman in a state of undress.

“Let there be no doubt: (the victim) was raped,” Mr Collins told the jury. “That is not in dispute. The defendant simply says it wasn’t him.”

The jury was shown harrowing, albeit grainy, footage of the rape, and Mr Collins said the Crown had overwhelming evidence that Naskov was the rapist.

He pointed to DNA and CCTV evidence which showed that Naskov had been wearing a cap, a blue T- shirt and Bermuda-type shorts in the hours leading up to the attack.

He said police found these clothes when they arrested Naskov about 15 hours after the attack. They searched his home and also found a pair of Naskov’s underpants stuffed into a rucksack from which DNA evidence was gleaned.

Police custody photos of a tattoo on Naskov’s back appeared to match that of the “distinctive image” caught on CCTV as the attacker ran from the alleyway.

Various DNA evidence was checked by a forensic officer whose conclusion was that it was a “billion-to-one” chance that the attacker was anyone but Naskov.

He was interviewed on three separate occasions by police but refused to answer any questions.

The trial continues.