Man raped woman after hitting her head off rock near holiday park

Gary Wishart has been jailed and put on the sex offenders' register.

Gary Wishart jailed for raping woman on beach near Seton Sands holiday park in East Lothian Google Maps

A man who raped a woman on a beach near a popular holiday park after hitting her head against a rock has been jailed.

Gary Wishart attacked the 43-year-old holidaymaker before stealing a vehicle from a nearby caravan site and crashing into several parked cars.

The 28-year-old was sentenced to five years and three months in prison at the High Court in Edinburgh on Friday.

Wishart had denied assaulting and raping the woman, who was visiting the area with a friend, on the beach near to Seton Sands holiday park in East Lothian on August 22, 2019.  

The court heard that the victim’s head was repeatedly struck against a rock before she was raped.

Wishart sat shaking his head in the dock after a jury found him guilty last month by a majority verdict of committing the sex crime. 

Lord Tyre deferred sentence on Wishart to obtain a report on his background.

On Friday, Lord Tyre told him that he had no other option but to send him to jail. 

Passing sentence, Lord Tyre said: “By the verdict of the jury, you were convicted by the jury on a charge of rape of a woman who had gone on holiday with a friend. 

“This is very clearly a very serious offence. You have been assessed of presenting a medium risk of sexual and other reoffending. 

“It is clear that the only appropriate sentence which can be imposed in this case is the imposition of a sentence of imprisonment.”

At an earlier hearing, Lord Tyre told jurors that they had heard “a serious and in some ways rather distressing case”.

Lord Tyre remanded Wishart, who had been on bail, in custody ahead of sentencing next month for the preparation of a background report and risk assessment.

Wishart, formerly of Roxburgh Place, Newton St Boswells, in the Borders, had pleaded guilty to stealing car keys and a car on August 22 in 2019 and driving without insurance.

Wishart, who has previous convictions for fire-raising and breach of the peace, also admitted failing to stop after colliding with parked vehicles and causing damage to them at Bath Street, in Portobello, in East Lothian, on the same date.

On Friday, Lord Tyre also placed Wishart on the Sex Offenders Register for life. 

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