Man, 26, faked being a gay teen to rob foster parents, make rape claim
British gay man was forced to shut down his charity and considered suicide after he encountered a man who pretended to be a vulnerable teen
A gay British man is facing jail for four and a half years after posing as a gay teen to rob his foster parents and make a rape claim against his counsellor.
Shane Peake, 26, contacted Wiltshire Council in June pretending to be a gay vulnerable 17-year-old kicked out by his family.
He told them his name was Steven Shaw.
He was placed in supported lodgings, while LGBT charity Rainbow Rooms’ Will Clark helped out with advice and care.
But when the 43-year-old who ran Rainbow Rooms for six years began to have doubts, Peake accused him of rape.
The 26-year-old fake was later discovered to have used several aliases and to have stolen from both Clark and his foster family.
Last week (11 October), Peake was jailed for four-and-a-half years after admitting perverting the course of justice, theft, burglary and fraud.
A Wiltshire Council spokesman said every ‘precaution possible’ is taken when dealing with vulnerable young people and described it as a ‘very unusual set of circumstances’.
While the allegations were false and Clark was never charged, he was forced to close down Rainbow Rooms after his life was ‘ruined’.
He has even tried to take his own life.
‘It is hard to believe that anyone can do something like this to another person,’ he told the Salisbury Journal.
‘Everything was tarnished by what he said I did. He has destroyed not just my reputation but the reputation of the charity.
“Everything the charity was and all it did in the community has gone. It is such a huge loss.’
Clark says while it was not easy for the charity to find funding before, now it would be ‘impossible.’
‘All the people it helped and everyone it would have helped in the future have lost that support.’
The former charity owner believes the accusations have changed him forever.
‘I used to give people the benefit of the doubt,’ he says, ‘but I can’t do that anymore.’