POLICE have praised the bravery of a schoolgirl after the man who raped and assaulted her was jailed for 18 years.

Paedophile Glen Mills, 36, is behind bars thanks to the courage shown by his victim after she came forward to report what had happened to Northumbria Police.

Mills, of Crawford Terrace, Walker, denied the offences but during a trial – in which the victim gave evidence from a remote suite – a jury saw through his lies.

He was convicted in April this year of one count of rape and five counts of sexual assault.

Mills was remanded into custody and on Friday a judge at Newcastle Crown Court sentenced him to 18 years behind bars, with an extended five-year licence.

Detective Constable Chris Hewison led the investigation and praised the bravery of the victim, who reported the abuse to police in 2019.

Det Con Hewison said: "First and foremost, I want to recognise the bravery of the victim who came forward in this case.

“She was subjected to an horrific ordeal and the courage she has shown means the man responsible is now behind bars.

“I would urge anyone who may be suffering in silence to come forward – your voice will be heard, we are here to support you and we will do everything we can to bring those responsible to justice.”

Mills was also handed an indefinite Sexual Harm Protection Order, which will see strict restrictions placed on him when he is released from prison. 

He will also have to sign the sex offenders’ register for life. 

All victims of sexual offences have anonymity for life and should not be identified.

Anyone who has suffered abuse or has concerns that someone is being abused should report it online via the Northumbria Police website or contact 101.

Always call 999 in an emergency.