October 2008

Paedophile escapes prison sentence

A paedophile walked free from court after a judge said the public would be best protected if he was given a community order.

Colin Lyons, 19, admitted sexual activity with a child and asked the judge at Oxford Crown Court yesterday to take four other similar offences into consideration when sentencing.

Ian Thomas, prosecuting, said: “The victim did not mention it to her mother at the time.

“She did not mention it until April.

“She was upset when she told her mother what had happened.

“The following day the police were called.”

Peter Coombe, defending, said: “Really, the best mitigation is his plea of guilty.”

He added that Lyons, of Park View Road, Witney, had felt sick after the incident.

“He has genuine remorse. He is disgusted with himself and what he has done.”

Judge Julian Hall handed Lyons a three year community order and ordered him to attend a sex offenders’ treatment programme.

He also ordered him to sign the sex offenders’ register for five years.

He said: “What you did was disgusting, and more and more people realise how much the sort of behaviour you indulged in affects the victims.

“If I sentence you to 12 months you would come out in six months with all these very difficult problems unresolved.

“For the protection of others in the future the only order I can make is a community order. It seems to me that is the proper sentence for child protection in the future.”