June 2022

Jail for Peeping Tom who breached court order by deleting dating app

A peeping Tom was back breaching a court order limiting his internet use just weeks after he was handed a ‘lifeline’ by an Oxford judge.

Night prowler Carl Ford, 29, was given the sexual harm prevention order in December last year at Chelmsford Crown Court for 17 charges, including going out at night and secretly filming women through their windows.

In March, an Oxford judge gave the Didcot man just 14 days’ imprisonment for breaching that order by failing to register a PlayStation video console, a laptop and memory card with the police.

On Wednesday, Ford was back before the same judge who had taken ‘a lenient view’ in the spring.

Prosecutor Alice Aubrey-Fletcher told the court Ford had deleted a dating app, called Badoo, in breach of his sexual harm prevention order and used his flatmate’s iPad to watch pornography.

Judge Michael Gledhill QC heard that an investigator from Thames Valley Police’s public protection department, which is responsible for monitoring sex offenders, visited Ford’s flat on May 25.

The defendant was out, but was told about the police visit by his flatmate.

Ms Aubrey-Fletcher said: “During the visit, the defendant’s phone was inspected. On the phone was found a photograph of an adult woman in her underwear. The defendant told the investigator the photograph came from a dating app called Badoo.”

That app had been deleted from the phone, however, in breach of the order. Ford claimed he had deleted the dating app to ‘hide it from his ex-partner as he didn’t want it to upset her’.

He admitted using his flatmate’s tablet computer, initially claiming he used it to watch Netflix TV shows. However, when he was told the device, which had not been registered with the police, would be analysed by forensic specialists, he confessed to using it to watch pornography online.

The pornography ‘was similar in nature to the voyeuristic images that were behind his original offences’, the prosecutor said.

Ford, of Buckthorn Crescent, Didcot, pleaded guilty to breaching his sexual harm prevention order. He had three previous convictions for breaching the order and was given what the prosecutor termed a ‘lifeline’ 14 day sentence in March.

On Wednesday, Judge Gledhill jailed him for 28 months.