August 2008

Sex offender spared jail in favour of treatment

A flasher who was identified by his white socks after exposing himself to a teenage girl has escaped prison.

Marc Watts, who works at a Biggleswade-based factory, appeared at St Albans Crown Court for sentence having admitted exposure and seven offences of making and possessing indecent images.

St Albans Crown Court heard how the 42-year-old had driven past the 15-year-old girl four times as she walked along Canonsfield Road in Old Welwyn at around 7am last November.

Just days later the defendant’s green Vectra came to the victim’s attention again, but this time he blew her a kiss and was seen touching himself.

The victim recalled that he was completely naked apart from a pair of white socks on his feet.

Police were alerted and a female officer saw Watts’ car at 7am in the same spot on November 5.

Again, he was naked and was arrested.

When questioned Watts of Marsom Grove, Luton said he would undress after leaving his night shift at a warehouse in Biggleswade and would take a long route home. He said he could not stop himself.

When police examined a laptop at Watts’ home they found 68 indecent images of teenage girls – most were at the lowest level of seriousness.

Judge Stephen Warner told him: “Clearly you gained some sexual gratification. You deliberately exposed yourself to her.”

He said he would not send him to prison because the public would be better served by Watts receiving treatment.

Watts was placed under supervision for three years with a condition he attends the Thames Valley Sex Offenders’ Programme.

The judge banned him from looking at pornography on the internet for five years, ordered that he register as a sex offender for five years and pay costs of £500.