New contact ban imposed on Coleraine child rapist

A COLERAINE man who raped a schoolgirl thirteen years ago has been banned from having any contact with children after a Belfast court imposed a five year Sexual Offences Prevention Order (SOPO).

Police fear 56-year-old Winston McConnell, who now resides at Eblana Street, Belfast, is still a risk to the public and sought the new restrictions at Belfast Magistrates’ Court last Tuesday.

The order prohibits McConnell from working or going near parks, leisure centres, schools and other places where children might gather.

It also prevents him from forming a relationship with anyone with children under 16 or carrying children in a vehicle without the prior consent of social services or his “handler”, known as a Designated Risk Manager.

The court was not given any detail as to why the police sought the new restrictions, however, similar applications have been made by police in the past when someone comes to the end of their term on the sex offender’s register and police fear he or she may still pose a threat.

McConnell pleaded guilty over a decade ago to raping a local schoolgirl and indecently assaulting her three times in October of 1998.