A MAN has been jailed for more than 11 years after violently attacking and raping a woman before two brave passers-by came to her aid.

At 10am on April 14, Brandon Woolven grabbed his victim - a woman in her 20s who cannot be named for legal reasons - as she walked her dog in woodland near to Pontefract Road, Barnsley.

Woolven, 22, dragged his victim further into the wooded area and began physically and sexually assaulting her, before going on to rape her.

Two joggers passing by saw Woolven attacking the victim and intervened, pulling him away from the victim.

One of the joggers was assaulted but managed to keep Woolven detained until officers arrived and arrested him.

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Detective Constable Becky Robinson, from Barnsley CID, said: “I have been working as a police officer for 16 years now and in all my service have never been faced with an investigation quite as horrifying as this one.

“Woolven attacked his victim at random, in broad daylight, and subjected her to the most brutal and sustained physical and sexual abuse imaginable.

“She has since told us that she believes that without the intervention of the two passers-by, she would have been killed - such was the ferocity of Woolven’s assault.”

Woolven, of no fixed abode but from the Brighton area, pleaded guilty to rape, two counts of sexual assault and two counts of assault occasioning actual bodily harm at an earlier hearing.

He was sentenced to 11-and-a-half years in prison at Sheffield Crown Court last Friday and was also handed an indefinite sexual harm prevention order (SHPO).

“This was a truly terrifying incident and I want to wholeheartedly commend the victim in this case for her unerring support of the police investigation and for the immense bravery she has shown throughout,” Det Con Robinson added.

“I also want to publicly recognise the bravery and heroism of the two members of the public who saw the attack and took action to protect the victim, in the process of which being injured themselves.

“Woolven is a truly dangerous individual and while he has pleaded guilty to the offences put before him, he has shown no remorse for his actions and I am pleased he has received a lengthy custodial sentence for his crimes.

“The victim in this case continues to recover from the physical and psychological injuries she suffered as a result of this attack and I hope that with the sentence passed today, she is able to take another step forward on her journey to recovery.”