MAN who filmed himself sexually assaulting a woman has been jailed for 12 years.

Bradley Smith, 46, of Imperial Avenue, Chelmsford was previously found guilty of two counts of sexual assault by penetration, coercive controlling behaviour and disclosing private sexual images without consent after subjecting a woman to years of abuse and manipulation.

The woman is said to have been made to "feel like a liar" by Mr Smith.

Smith was arrested in 2021, after a woman bravely reported that she had been sexually assaulted by Smith.

The victim also disclosed that Smith had taken sexual images of her without her knowledge and threatened to share them in a Whatsapp group.

Further enquiries from Essex Police’s Adult Sexual Abuse Investigation Team revealed that Smith had shot the victim’s hamster with a BB gun after he sent his victim an image of her dead hamster. 

Smith was charged with disclosing private sexual images without consent to cause distress, two counts of assault against a female, engaging in controlling and coercive behaviour and rape.

He pleaded guilty to disclosing private sexual photographs and films with intent to cause distress. 

Following a two-week trial, he was found guilty of two counts of assault against a female by penetration and engaging in controlling and coercive behaviour. 

The jury failed to come to a decision on one count of rape.

Bradley Smith appeared at Chelmsford Crown Court on Friday, 21 June where he was sentenced to a total of 12 years in prison.

The judge ordered him to serve at least two thirds of this sentence and issued him with an indefinite restraining order.

Investigating officer in the case, Detective Sergeant Jade Lawton said “What this lady has been through is beyond distressing and the strength she has demonstrated throughout this difficult process is admirable.

“Smith has shown himself to be a manipulator and an abuser, with no regard for the victim’s feelings by refusing to admit what he has done.

“Smith felt like he had power over the victim and tried to manipulate her into thinking he’d done nothing wrong.

“I hope that the sentence will allow the victim time to heal and regain the power that Smith tried to take from her.

“I am in awe of the strength she has shown throughout the process, none of this was her fault and I hope that the sentence gives her the closure she needs to be able to move forward with her life.”

Support is there for anyone affected by rape and sexual abuse, and no victim or survivor is alone. Synergy Essex provides specialist support for victims and survivors of rape and sexual abuse of all ages and all genders across Essex, Thurrock and Southend.

Synergy Essex is a partnership of rape and sexual abuse centres in Essex: CARA (Centre for Action on Rape and Abuse), SERICC Rape and Sexual Abuse Specialist Service and Southend-on-Sea Rape Crisis (SOS Rape Crisis). Synergy Essex is independent from the police and provides support for victims and survivors throughout their journey.  

Victims and survivors can self-refer, or be referred by a parent, partner, friend or professional and can access specialist emotional support, counselling and advocacy.  For victims and survivors who report to the police, Synergy Essex provides an Independent Sexual Violence Adviser (ISVA) service, providing support throughout the criminal justice process.  

For more information visit the Synergy Essex website:

If you recognise any of the behaviour mentioned in this article and have been reflecting on your actions, it’s not too late to make a change.

Please visit The Change Project website for advice on how to make a difference to you, your family, and your partners in the future.

If you’re a survivor of abuse looking for community support in your area please visit the Essex Compass website.