A former children’s television star has been jailed for ten years after raping a woman and telling her ‘you die tonight’.
Paul Ballard, 39, was found guilty on all counts at Chelmsford Crown Court on Friday 30. July after denying rape, attempted rape, assault, criminal damage and threats to kill.
During a hearing in Chelmsford Crown Court yesterday, he was sentenced to ten years in prison.
This sentence will run in succession to a nine-year sentence he is currently serving for killing two people while driving under the influence of cocaine.
Former children’s TV presenter Paul Ballard, 39, has been jailed for ten years after raping a woman and telling her her life is coming to an end
Former child actor and TV presenter Ballard had starred in GMTV’s program Diggit from 1998 to 2002 with Fearne Cotton, Craig Doyle and Reggie Yates.
Ballard, from Theydon Bois, Essex, launched an attack on the woman shortly after 5am on 19 September 2020 at a hotel in Hatfield Heath.
During the incident, the 39-year-old told her: ‘Your life is ending. You’re dying tonight. ‘
But she fled the room and found a member of the hotel staff, who then called police.
Paul Ballard, back row second from right, is pictured next to Reggie Yates (center) and Fearne Cotton (bottom right), before the trio starred in GMTV’s children’s program Diggit from 1998 to 2002
Police protected the woman, who has been supported over the past 12 months by specialist officers.
Ballard had claimed to have had conversations with the woman and denied that he had threatened her.
But the jury found him guilty on all counts.
After sentencing today, lead investigator Detective Constable Dan Lambert said: ‘Today, Ballard has been sentenced to ten years in prison after subjecting the woman to a terrifying ordeal.
‘Our priority throughout this study has been to ensure her welfare and ensure her justice.
Pictured: The terrifying aftermath of the eight car crash in Romford, Essex last February that killed Eileen Haskell, 64, and Richard Trezise, 48,
‘The strength she has shown has been remarkable throughout.
‘As a force, we take crimes against women and girls extremely seriously, and I am very proud to have played a role in ensuring Ballard’s victim justice, and he will now spend a significant amount of time behind bars as a result.
‘I would like to pay tribute again to the bravery shown by the victim in this case.
Eileen Haskell, 64, (above) was driving when she was killed in the crash last February
‘No one should ever have to go through the ordeal she has been subjected to, but I hope there is a consolation in the fact that her attacker is now behind bars for some time.’
It comes after Ballard was convicted in August of killing two people in a horror car.
He was driving between ’88mph and 104mph ‘in a 30mph zone before hitting the back of Mrs Haskell’s Ford Kuga.
Mrs Haskell died in the crash that took place on Squirrels Heath Road in Romford, East London, on 20 February last year.
The second victim, schoolteacher Richard Trezise, 48, was waiting at a bus stop with family members when he was hit by a vehicle and killed in the pile.
Eight cars were involved in the collision and at least seven people were treated at the hospital.
Cocaine addict Ballard drove with his 12-year-old son in the front passenger seat, claiming he had a seizure before the crash, Old Bailey heard.
Ballard, of Woodland Way, Theydon Bois, Essex, admitted two counts of causing death by dangerous driving.
He denied two counts of causing death by driving while insured, which will not be prosecuted.