05-27-2007, 08:31 AM #1Registered User
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- Jan 2006
UK-Girls speak for first time of paedophile kidnap terror
TWO friends kidnapped and repeatedly raped when they were just ten have spoken for the first time of their terrifying ordeal.
Now 18, Charlene Lunnon and Lisa Hoodless have bravely waived their right to anonymity to back our campaign for Sarah's Law—and tell a harrowing story that will chill every parent in Britain to the bone.
Still close friends today, united forever by their shared ordeal, the girls were snatched off the street on their way to primary school by evil paedophile Alan Hopkinson. They reveal how they were:
BUNDLED into the boot of his car, with Charlene passing up a chance to escape to stay with her pal.
DANGLED over the edge of suicide spot Beachy Head as the raving pervert threatened to MURDER them.
RAPED over and over in turn by Hopkinson as he kept them tied up at his flat for FOUR DAYS.
ALLOWED to watch their devastated parents' desperate nationwide TV appeals for their safe return.
The girls also reveal how they hatched a plot to KILL their evil kidnapper with a knife in their worst moment of despair.
Eight years on, Hopkinson, 53, is serving nine life sentences. His two little victims are young women and united in backing Sarah's Law.
Charlene says: "More needs to be done to protect children from attacks by paedophiles. Lisa and I understand that—because we know what it's like to go through it."
Their nightmare—which sparked a nationwide search in January 1999—began as they walked to primary school together clutching their satchels. Lisa—who now has an 11-month-old child of her own—said: "I remember walking out of my house as his car was driving by. He followed me.
"I've always seen it all as my fault. I used to think if I had left the house five minutes later, he may have just driven past."
Charlene tells how they were fooling around on the edge of the pavement when Hopkinson—already a convicted paedophile —grabbed his opportunity.
"He stopped suddenly, got out and opened his boot. We thought he was getting something out, but he came over to us, put his arms around us, and said, ‘I'm so glad I didn't hit you'. Then he suddenly said, ‘Do exactly what I tell you—get into the car!'— and got hold of us tight."
Grabbing the smaller Lisa round the face, Hopkinson hoisted her into the boot of the Vauxhall Corsa first. "Her face was going red where she was screaming. I might have been able to get away, but I didn't want to leave her," says Charlene.
She was shoved in after Lisa and the boot slammed shut. In the pitch blackness, struggling to breathe, Charlene began to sing to her sobbing little pal to calm her.
"I was stroking her hair and trying to reassure her even though I knew inside he was going to kill us," she said. All Lisa recalls of the terrifying journey is cold fear. "I don't know how long we were in there. I just remember I couldn't breathe."
They were driven towards Eastbourne —around a 30-minute journey from their homes in St Leonards, East Sussex. On the way Hopkinson stopped to take out Charlene and assault her in the back of the car before returning her to the boot.
Then they arrived at the small bungalow owned by his parents who were on holiday in Australia. Lisa says: "He opened the boot and zipped me into a big sports bag to carry me round to the front door." Charlene was left in the car.
Hopkinson took Lisa to a back room at the bungalow and stripped her, tying her wrists behind her neck with a pair of tights. "I was just standing there, tied up as he took my name and details and wrote them down," says Lisa.
Then he attacked her. "Back then, I didn't know what he was doing. Even when Charlene said the word ‘rape' to me afterwards, I didn't understand." Later that day, Hopkinson took the girls to his dingy flat in a 1960s shopping precinct. Parking in the underground car park he carried Lisa up in the holdall, before forcing Charlene into a black bin bag.
Once inside he stripped both ten-year-olds, making them wear only a couple of his old T-shirts. "They smelled damp and dirty. Like a dirty old pervert man," says Charlene.
He tied Lisa up again before taking Charlene into his bedroom. "I could hear Charlene crying," says Lisa. "I knew he was hurting her in some way, but I didn't know what he was doing."
And there was no escape. Experienced kidnapper Hopkinson—who had served time for abducting an 11-year-old girl—had removed all the door handles.
Astonishingly, despite their predicament, that night the girls tried to reassure one another—eating the packed lunches meant for school as they cuddled on Hopkinson's filthy sofa. To this day, they are unclear about exactly what happened over the next three days in that flat—their minds blocking out the horror. They remember Hopkinson walking around naked, occasionally talking to them before dragging one of them off again into his room.
The clever pervert—a computer programmer with an IQ of 159—told them scary stories to stop them trying to flee.
"He told us there was a psycho man next door and if he heard us or we tried to escape then he would kill us," Lisa says. "He kept saying he was much nicer."
By now the girls' disappearance had hit the headlines—in the same way two other 10-year-olds, Holly Wells and Jessica Chapman would two and a half years later.
And from their prison the frightened youngsters saw their story reported to the nation on Hopkinson's TV.
Even the Spice Girls made an appeal for their safe return. Lisa says: "When we were left alone, we were allowed to watch telly. The first time I saw myself on the news I felt a burst of excitement, to know people were looking for me." Charlene adds: "But the days dragged on and you could see everybody giving up hope. On about the third day I saw my dad on the news, and I could tell he thought I was dead."
Hopkinson's behaviour became increasingly erratic. On the third day, he told the girls he was going to take them home and coaxed them back into the car boot only to drive them to notorious suicide spot Beachy Head. He later told police he was planning to throw them to their deaths.
Charlene says: "He was hanging us over the edge. I remember him holding us off the cliff. He said he was going to kill us.
"We both gave up hope and thought this was it now. We just gave up.
"By this time we were too messed up. There were no feelings, no emotions. Then he said, ‘No, I want you for one more day'. He got back in the car." Desperate to survive, the girls even hatched a plot to stab Hopkinson as he slept, searching high and low for a knife. But they found nothing.
Soon they became resigned to their fate, not even fighting as he walked them to his room for more abuse. But police were about to find Hopkinson's lair.
Lisa says: "On the final morning he woke me up. I pretended to go back to sleep but he was having none of it.
"I was in the bedroom for two hours. I remember watching the clock for ages, crying my eyes out. He had just put me back (in the living room), at 11am and Charlene turned to me to ask if he had done it again.
"I said ‘Yeah' and then there was a knock on the door. There was a shout of ‘police', and a second bang. I just wanted to shout, it was like a huge surge of adrenalin.
"He was pacing up and down, panicking, saying ‘f*** and s***'. We were so scared the police would go away. But then he opened the door and said to them, ‘I've got those two girls in my front room'." Their ordeal was over—but it later emerged their discovery had been ACCIDENTAL.
The officers were following up separate allegations from parents that Hopkinson had abused children visiting his home.
They had failed to search Hopkinson's home when Charlene and Lisa went missing—even though they knew he had served seven years for kidnapping and indecently assaulting an 11-year-old found tied up in a cupboard in his home.
Now, eight years on, the girls sit by Beachy Head near the spot where they could have died...still hoping lessons can be learned from what happened to them.
Lisa says: "For a long time after I was scared of the dark. No child should have to go through what I went through. I look at my son Kyle and it makes me even more certain we should do more to protect children against paedophiles. I want my child to live in a safer world." Sitting by her, Charlene says: "There are little fears—like not being able to walk in the day on my own. It's ridiculous to other people—but Lisa understands. We've grown so close over this."
Both blasted the lax sentencing that meant Hopkinson was allowed out of prison after just a few years to target them.
Charlene says: "The kind of people who do to children what he did to us should be locked away for a long, long time. I hope he rots in hell. I wouldn't want him to die—it would be an easy way out." Lisa adds: "The sex offenders register doesn't stop them. They are supposed to be monitored but they aren't. It's meaningless. "These people don't change. They will always want to attack children. And parents have a right to Sarah's Law to know if they are living nearby."
05-27-2007, 10:31 AM #2Former Member
They had failed to search Hopkinson's home when Charlene and Lisa went missing—even though they knew he had served seven years for kidnapping and indecently assaulting an 11-year-old found tied up in a cupboard in his home
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