‘Tinder rapist’ who sexually assaulted five women he met on dating app jailed for life

Monday January 10, 2022 10:15 pm GMT

A trainee paramedic who raped five women he met on the dating app Tinder has been jailed for life.

Sexual predator Tom Rodwell, 31, has “ruined” the lives of his victims and left them worthless after subjecting them to sexual and physical abuse.

On sentencing at Teesside Crown Court, Judge Paul Watson said Rodwell had become “addicted” to his sense of power over women, some of whom were students.

“You are a callous and callous sexual predator whose only concern is your own satisfaction,” the judge told the accused.

Rodwell, who previously worked for the Royal Navy in Scotland and HMRC, used his healthcare ambitions to convince his victims that he was kind and caring, despite being manipulative and violent.

He admitted 10 rape offenses against the five victims over a three-year period between 2017 and 2020.

He also admitted to attempted rape and sexual assault.

Rodwell, of Acklam, Middlesbrough, told a victim he had “rough sex” before raping her at least four times, prosecutor Richard Bennett said.

“It would become evident that the accused did not realize or did not seem to care that he needed her consent,” he said.

When he met his second victim face to face, he told her he wanted to get her pregnant and threw her birth control pills in the trash – which she thought was a joke.

But he attacked her when they met a second time – before sending a Whatsapp message asking when he could “rape her again,” the court said.

The third woman recounted how she considered taking her own life after being repeatedly raped by Rodwell.

Her fourth victim recalled how he raped her in a hotel and repeatedly hit her. He claimed he did not remember the attack – but claimed his ex “liked him,” Mr Bennett told court.

The latest victim recounted how Rodwell said he wanted to “own her” and “suffocate” her.

In defense, Andrew Turton said Rodwell was “unable to explain” the reasons for these heinous acts.

“It seems that alcohol played a role,” he told the court.

Rodwell must serve at least 12 years before being eligible for parole.

He is also the subject of a restraining order prohibiting him from contacting his victims and is registered for life on the sex offender register.

Speaking after the conviction, Detective Constable Rick Sainsbury praised the women for their bravery in speaking out as he criticized Rodwell’s “vile” crimes.

“He is a dangerous individual and his selfish and depraved actions have caused lasting harm to his victims and their families,” he added.