Decades-Old Rapes Solved After Man Pees on Neighbor's Plant

'I’m so glad I reported him and these women have got justice'
By Michael Harthorne,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 17, 2018 3:39 PM CDT

(Newser) – A man who raped two women at knifepoint in Britain avoided capture for over 30 years. Then he peed on his neighbor's potted plant. The BBC reports a 21-year-old woman was raped by a man while walking alone in 1983. An 18-year-old woman was raped in a similar situation five years later. The cases remained unsolved and unconnected until 60-year-old Eric McKenna was arrested in 2016 after getting in a dispute with his neighbor that culminated in him urinating in one of her potted plants, according to the Press Association. McKenna was given a warning for harassment and a DNA sample was taken. It was an exact match for samples recovered following both rapes.

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McKenna was arrested and charged with the rapes last year, Chronicle Live reports. He was sentenced to prison on Friday. "McKenna thought he had got away with his crimes, but a neighborly dispute and a moment of stupidity has landed him in prison for 23 years," Metro quotes Detective Constable Mick Wilson as saying. Wilson says McKenna has "failed to show a glimmer of remorse" for his crimes. As for the neighbor whose plant got peed on, she tells Chronicle Live: “I felt physically sick when I found out what he’d done ... I’m so glad I reported him and these women have got justice." (DNA on a Coke can unraveled a teen's 1989 murder.)

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