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Read more about victims of crime and sentencing.
HMA v Kevin Hood
Nov 16, 2022
On sentencing, Lord Arthurson said:
"Kevin Hood, on 19 October 2022 at Edinburgh High Court you were convicted by a jury of a charge of abduction, assault and rape to the injury and danger of life of your victim, a young mother. Pleas of guilty had already been tendered by you at an earlier stage, and were accepted by the Crown during the trial after evidence had been led, to one charge of threatening and abusive behaviour and one charge of assault in respect of another former partner; to a further charge of threatening and abusive behaviour in respect of another complainer; and, finally, in respect of the complainer in the rape charge, a separate charge of engaging in a course of abusive behaviour in terms of the Domestic Abuse (Scotland) Act 2018 section 1.
"The crime libelled in the charge of abduction, assault and rape to injury and danger of life was one of the very worst crimes of this nature that I have required to deal with in my judicial career, and comprised the use of a knife, limb restraints and sexual torture in addition to the libelled multiple penetrative acts committed by you against your victim. You intentionally carried out certain penetrative acts with the purpose of obtaining your victim’s mobile phone password as you sought to continue your campaign of abuse and control of her. You inflicted a significant internal injury to your victim as well as bruising to her neck and arms. You additionally covered your victim’s nose and mouth with your hand so that she could not breathe and you compressed her throat, to the danger of her life. At one point as you had your hands round your victim’s throat you threatened to kill her, stating that you would “put her to sleep”. This was a sustained attack involving sickening acts of sexual violence undertaken by you with the purpose of controlling and terrorising your victim. On your own account you committed this crime having taken alcohol, valium and steroids.
"You are now aged 34. You have to date accrued a significant criminal record, comprising 26 groups of previous convictions, including crimes against women, but not of a sexual nature, and for crimes involving weapons. You were made the subject of a non-harassment order in 2016 for a domestically aggravated assault and were again made subject to a similar order in 2018 for a conviction on indictment for assault to injury involving the use of a knife. You additionally have convictions for other offences related to offensive weapons, including a hammer and a screwdriver.
"A criminal justice social work report, including a detailed risk assessment, is now available. The author of the report advises that you have accused the complainer in the principal charge of fabrication and has reported that you disclosed to the author your use of sex workers from online websites and your preference for sexual behaviour involving the use of restraints and physical violence, including strangulation. You have been assessed as presenting a high risk of sexual reoffending. The author further states that you are highly likely to be coercively controlling within future relationships. The report recommends a significantly extended period of post-release supervision in your case.
"I have listened with care this morning to the submissions advanced on your behalf by your senior counsel, who himself most ably conducted your trial. In particular I note what has been said by him regarding events observed by you in your early life which, as your senior counsel put matters, “somewhat stunted your emotional maturity”. He correctly pointed out that in terms of assistance afforded to you in custody, you will have to participate willingly yourself, and that is advice that you would do well to bear in mind as you serve the sentence to be imposed on you today.
"In the whole circumstances I have concluded that the only appropriate disposal on this indictment, involving as it does on the principal charge sexual offending of the gravity which I have described, requires to be an extremely substantial custodial one. You have been convicted of offending which represents a sustained course of coercive and controlling behaviour, culminating in the violent rape perpetrated by you in terms of charge 7. I have considered with care the option of making a risk assessment order in respect of you, but ultimately taken the view, with some reluctance, that, the principal index offence being one of sexual violence, you have nothing directly analogous to that within your albeit extensive criminal antecedents, and that in such circumstances the requisite pattern of directly relevant offending is not fully present here. Instead, I view the offending before the court in this case as a considerable escalation in your existing controlling behaviour towards women, emerging for the first time as an explosion of prolonged sexual violence, including sexual torture, towards your victim in charge 7 in this case. Having drawn back from making a risk assessment order, on the basis of the evidence led at your trial, which I described to the jury on your conviction as harrowing, together with the terms of the background report and of course your criminal record, I propose today selecting a custodial tariff towards the very highest end of the range available. To be clear, I take this course expressly to punish you, to reflect the revulsion of society in respect of such appalling offending, and to deter others from committing such crimes.
"Further, having regard to the whole material available in this case, I have concluded that you present a high risk of serious harm from which it is necessary to protect the public, and that accordingly the normal period of licence would not be sufficient to protect the public from the risk which you would present on your release from the custodial part of any sentence. I consider that your high risk relates to adult women generally, not just to those with whom you may be in a relationship at the time. I accordingly intend today imposing upon you an extended sentence, which will be in two parts. The first part is custodial, namely a period of imprisonment. This will be followed by an extension period in the community, when you will be on licence and under supervision. The conditions of your licence will be fixed by Scottish Ministers. If during this extension period you fail to comply with the conditions of your licence, it may be revoked and you may be returned to custody for a further period in respect of this indictment. The court also has power to deal with you if you commit another offence after your release and while you are on licence. It is to be hoped in your case that this extension period will contribute materially towards your re-integration into the community in due course. Standing the information available to the court concerning your level of risk it is plain that in your case the extension period will require to be a robustly managed and exceptionally lengthy one.
"You will therefore serve on this indictment, on charges 1, 2, 3 and 4, on an in cumulo basis, a sentence of 3 years imprisonment, discounted from a period of 4 years due to the timing of pleas offered on your behalf earlier in these proceedings. You will additionally on charge 7 serve, on a concurrent basis, an extended sentence of 25 years duration, with a custodial term of 15 years and thereafter an extension period of 10 years. I attribute one year of that custodial period to the aggravation to the charge as libelled under section 1 of the Abusive Behaviour and Sexual Harm (Scotland) Act 2016. These sentences will be backdated to 23 March 2021, being the date of your initial remand into custody in these proceedings. In respect of charge 7, I further make a non-harassment order preventing you from approaching or contacting, or attempting to approach or contact, in any way, the complainer named in that charge, and that order will be for an indefinite period. These disposals are imposed on a concurrent basis in order to obtemper in this sentencing exercise the important sentencing principle of totality.
"I readily accept that this disposal is a severe one. It is, however, in my view entirely commensurate with the level of gravity of the offending before the court in what I regard to be a quite exceptional case of this nature, and is a sentence which I consider in the whole circumstances it to be my public duty to impose.
"Finally, as a result of this disposal, you will now become subject to the notification requirements of the Sexual Offences Act 2003 for an indefinite period."