July 2020

New Year’s Eve grope man avoids jail

A sex pest who groped a woman twice on a New Year’s Eve night out has avoided jail.

Terry-lee Bickmore, 35, grabbed the woman’s breast while they were celebrating at a Colchester nightspot and then her backside when they and others returned to a house afterwards.

The incident happened on New Year’s Eve 2018, heading into the first day of January 2019.

He admitted two counts of sexual assault.

A third charge was left to lie on file.

The victim has been left traumatised by the event but Judge David Turner QC said he could not be sure her mental health issues could be put down solely to the assaults.

He handed Bickmore, of Medlar Close, Witham, a four month jail sentence suspended for two years when he appeared at Chelmsford Crown Court.

Judge Turner said Bickmore had targeted the woman in a bout of unwanted flirtation.

He said: “Your behaviour was completely out of line,” he said.

“You lacked respect and decency.

“It was a sexual assault in place where she was entitled to feel free, safe and able to enjoy herself.

“You stared at her and made her feel uncomfortable then went onto grope her.

“She reports as having had suicidal thoughts, is anxious and stressed.

“Your actions have had a very real impact on her life.

“You have previous convictions but have had a gap of 17 years until this.

“I have to strike some sort of balance here.”

Bickmore must also complete 100 hours of unpaid work and attend 30 rehabilitation days.

A restraining order was also granted banning him from contacting the victim or going to her home address for three years.

He must sign the sex offender’s register for seven years.