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Transgender woman remanded to male prison after rape conviction

Crime WorldBy Sunday World
Davina Ayrton
Davina Ayrton

A transgender woman has been remanded to a male prison after being found guilty of raping a teenage girl when she was a man.

A jury convicted Davina Ayrton, who changed her name from David three years ago, of the sexual attack on a 15-year-old girl in the autumn of 2004 following a week-long trial at Portsmouth Crown Court.

Following conviction, Judge Ian Pearson remanded Ayrton into custody for her own safety and said it was likely she would be held at the male prison in Winchester, Hampshire, until sentencing on March 4.

The court heard that Ayrton has learning difficulties and has been living at the Heywood Sumner House care home in Fordingbridge.

The court was also told that the 34-year-old attempted to commit suicide last summer.

Judge Pearson said: "I am going to have to remand in custody, if I were to release on bail there are substantial grounds to believe she would be a risk to herself and a risk of failing to attend for whatever reason.

"I will therefore have to remand in custody, it will have to be a male prison in Winchester but it will be an issue for the prison service."

Thanking the jury, the judge added: "It's been a slightly unusual case and it's not been an easy case."

A court officer said that the prison had been informed and protocols put in place for Ayrton's detention.

Ayrton told the court in her evidence that she had not undergone any physical modifications or taken any medication as part of her gender swap.

The court was also told that Ayrton, who has a son, was convicted of possessing indecent images of children at Bournemouth Crown Court in January 2014.

Her defence barrister Ann-Marie Talbot declined to comment on her client's remand status after the hearing.

The trial heard that Ayrton had met up with the victim, who had run away from home, and two friends on an evening in the autumn of 2004 and gone drinking in a garage which had a sofa and chairs in it.

The victim described how she screamed and shouted at Ayrton, who was 23 at the time, to stop but failed to wake up her friend and her boyfriend who were sleeping nearby.

The prosecution was brought after a care worker reported that Ayrton had confessed to the rape in January 2014 and also told her that she was a "paedophile" and that she had "always known there was something wrong with me and I need help".