Lauren Taylor was just 16 when she was raped by a Metropolitan Police officer in 2010.
Adam Provan was almost twice her age but he lied to her, telling her he was 22 and promising a date at the cinema.
But first, he explained, he wanted to go for a walk in a park in Romford, east London. Instead, he took her to a woodland and raped her.
More than a decade later, Provan has been sentenced at Wood Green Crown Court for the crime.
The former Met officer, 44, from Newmarket in Suffolk, was jailed for 16 years with a further eight on extended licence for two counts of rape against Lauren, as well as six counts of raping a female police officer between 2003 and 2005.
But it has taken several years – and three trials – to secure justice for the women.
“I was just frozen with fear, I think,” Lauren said. “That’s how I managed to get through the whole trauma and get home safely – was just to pretend I wasn’t there, pretend it wasn’t me. It wasn’t happening to me.”
Lauren said Provan acted as though nothing had happened after her rape, buying her a milkshake and later raping her again.
It took six years for her to feel able to report the crime to police.
Provan’s first trial ended in a hung jury and at his second trial 2018 he was found guilty of two counts of rape and was jailed for nine years. He was sacked from the Metropolitan police in 2019, but his conviction was later overturned on appeal.
However, there was another woman who had attended court and listened to Lauren’s victim impact statement.
She was a Met Police officer like Provan. And he had raped her too.
During the third trial this year the court heard that the female officer told Met bosses Provan had raped and abused her years before Lauren’s case, but had effectively been told to keep quiet about it for the sake of her career.
The second woman told the court in a victim impact statement she “was the victim, yet I felt like the suspect”, adding she “felt bullied and victimised” at work.
Judge Lucas said her treatment by the Met was both “abysmal” and “shocking”.
‘The truth kept me going’
Despite the other woman’s experience, Lauren said her own treatment by officers has been very different and she is grateful for their support.
Now aged 29, Lauren has the legal right to remain an anonymous sexual abuse survivor, but she wants to share her story to encourage others to come forward.
“Finding out he was a police officer was sickening,” she said. “It took me a lot of courage and strength to go to police.
“But I think, over time, they have been more to me than some family have.”
In her victim impact statement read to the court, she explained her relationships have broken down due to the rape and the impact of giving evidence, and she still experiences “flashbacks and panic attacks”.
Although she is “thankful” Provan is back in jail, she is angry she had to go through another trial.
“To be honest, I don’t feel like I’ve been very strong. But I feel like the only one who can do anything about it is me,” she said.
“I know the truth, and that’s the only thing that kept me going.”
Sentencing Provan, Judge Lucas told the defendant he had displayed a “cold-blooded entitlement to sex”.
The judge said he was troubled by the way the Met handled the female officer’s initial complaints against Provan’s behaviour in 2005, saying those at the force “were more concerned with looking after one of their own than taking her seriously”.
He went on to say that if an investigation been taken forward, Lauren may not have been raped.
During the trial jurors heard that Provan’s predatory behaviour dated back to the 1990s and he was alleged to have contacted a 16-year-old girl after she gave her details as a witness in 2003.
Another female officer complained in 2005 that Provan sent her “nuisance” messages but the issue was dealt with “informally”, the court was told.
Judge Lucas told the defendant: “The persistence and seriousness of your offending is clear when set out in these stark terms.
“By your actions you have brought disgrace on the police force.”
The Met’s Assistant Commissioner, Louisa Rolfe, described Provan’s actions as “utterly deplorable”.
“We are examining Provan’s criminal and conduct history in the Met so we can fully understand whether we could have acted sooner to bring him before the courts, or have stopped him joining the police,” she said.
“We can already see there were key moments where we let women down and did not do all we could to support them.
“We have told the Independent Office for Police Conduct we are carrying out a review and advised them that we will make appropriate referrals,” she said.