Joseph McCann trial: Mother was 'tied up while rapist molested her children'
20 November 2019, 13:41 | Updated: 20 November 2019, 16:08
A mother was tied up with electrical cable by a knife-wielding sex attacker who molested her 17-year-old daughter and 11-year-old son, a court heard.
Alleged serial rapist Joseph McCann, 34, is accused of tricking his way into the woman's home in Greater Manchester before telling her: "I will slit your throat."
The mother-of-two, who cannot be named to protect her identity, described her ordeal on 5 May in a police interview that was played in court.
McCann, from Harrow, west London, is on trial after denying 37 charges relating to 11 women and children, including rape, kidnap and false imprisonment.
The mother in Greater Manchester described him as being "calm and calculated" during her ordeal and said he appeared to be "enjoying it".
She told the court: "I have come back in a taxi where this fella has said 'I will come with you to make sure you get home OK'."
McCann is then accused of producing a knife as he ordered the woman to lie down in her son's bedroom, forcing the children into another bedroom.
He is also alleged to have tied her up and told her: "Don't look at me or I will slit your throat."
The woman told the court: "He tied my legs together and then he turned me back over again but he kept coming in saying 'you watch, or say anything I will slit your throat'.
"I said 'are you going to kill us all' and he said 'shut up'.
"I could just hear him in my bedroom with (the children) because I was face down, I could only hear him say '(boy's name) lie down on the floor, don't look at me'.
"I think I heard (the girl) say, 'no, no, I don't want to do that'. I thought, my God.
"It was like I was in and out of consciousness. I don't know if it was fright.
"I was trying to get out but I thought if he sees me he would kill me. He had my children in the bedroom."
The mother told the court McCann checked on her three or four times.
She said: "He said if I moved my eyes or anything he would slit my throat and I believed him.
"I did not even want to move my eyeballs."
The woman told officers she heard her daughter taking a shower and ask: "Is that OK now?"
She described how the girl then jumped out of a bedroom window to escape.
The mother said: "He (the attacker) must have run down the stairs to go get to her and my son, God bless him, he must have run downstairs, put the safety catches on.
"He said 'mum, mum, we are safe. (My sister) saved us'."
The woman said her son then ran downstairs, grabbed their attacker's discarded knife and used it to cut her free, saying: "Mummy, let's go out the back door."
The mother continued: "I said 'hold onto me'. I said 'run like you never ran before and you get out'."
Her son told her he had suffered sexual abuse after she asked him what had happened, the jury was told.
She said: "I said 'it's OK, son'. I just wanted him to be calm for a bit. I said, 'we are alive'."
The woman said she was "petrified" and felt like she would pass out as police were told what happened, the Old Bailey heard.
McCann told the mother he was from Northern Ireland and had a son, the court heard.
The woman, who gave evidence from behind a screen at the Old Bailey, wept as she told jurors: "I was in a room on my own while he had my children.
"I was just that terrified we was all going to die."
Jo Sidhu QC, cross-examining, presented an alternative version of events on behalf of the defendant.
He suggested the woman had become upset that McCann was with her daughter in a bedroom.
Mr Sidhu said: "You reacted to this by fetching a kitchen knife. And you had brought that kitchen knife upstairs with you and you were shouting when you approached the bedroom in which Mr McCann and your daughter were doing something, and you shouted about the fact Mr McCann was wanted for rape and you burst into the bedroom with this knife and you tried to attack him.
"It was obvious he was tying you up in order to stop you from being violent towards him because you were out of control."
The witness replied: "I disagree with all of that."
The trial continues.
(c) Sky News 2019: Joseph McCann trial: Mother was 'tied up while rapist molested her children'