Predatory sex offender seen ‘loitering in changing rooms and giving sweets to children’
A child sex offender has been given an extended sentence as a dangerous offender after a court ruled he posed a significant risk to youngsters.
Concerns had been raised by members of the public about pensioner David Jenkins loitering in a leisure centre changing room, giving sweets to children, and setting up a computer gaming room in his house before he went on to sexually assault a young boy.
The 70-year-old denies he has any sexual interest in children and insists his behaviour towards them “comes from a place of kindness” but a probation officer has concluded he is a “predatory” sex offender.
Swansea Crown Court heard that last summer year a boy returned home after meeting friends in a park and told his mother he had been engaged in sexual conversation by a man, had a penis shown to him, and been hugged.
The police were alerted to the incident and Jenkins was identified and arrested.
Georgina Donohue, prosecuting, said in his subsequent interview 70-year-old Jenkins accepted he had talked about “erections and masturbation” with a young boy but denied getting any sexual gratification from it.
Jenkins has a previous conviction for sexually assaulting a child in the 1980s.
The court heard that though it had not resulted in any charges concerns had previously been raised by local parents while Jenkins was living in Morriston.
Police had been told that the defendant was giving sweets to children and engaging them in conversations and it was later found he had installed a large TV and a computer games console in a room in his house with the apparent intention of encouraging youngsters to visit.
Concerns had also been raised about the defendant loitering around the showers and changing rooms of a Swansea leisure centre.
The court heard police had been considering applying for a stand lone sexual harm prevention order against Jenkins to help control his behaviour when he went on to sexually assault the young boy.
David Jenkins, now of Neath Road, Rhos, Pontardawe, admitted engaging in sexual communications with a child under 13 and to sexual assault of a child.
The court heard that in 2010 he was jailed for 42 for five counts of sexually assaulting a girl in the 1980s.
Judge Christopher Vosper KC said he had carefully read the pre-sentence report, which had been written by a very experienced probation officer.
He said the report concluded Jenkins was a “predatory and calculated sexual offender”.
He noted the report said the defendant denied having any sexual interest in children and claims his behaviour towards youngsters “comes from a place of kindness” but the probation officer had concluded he poses a high risk to children.
The judge said he was satisfied an extended sentence was necessary to protect the public but he said the sentence he was about to pass was an unusual one as, given the relevant sentences for the offences before the court, the extended element would be significantly longer than the custodial term.
Jenkins was given an extended sentence of six years and eight months comprising one year and eight months in custody followed by an extended five-year licence period.
The defendant must serve two-thirds of the custodial element of the sentence before he can apply for release but it will be for the Parole Board to decide if he is safe to be released.
Jenkins will be a registered sex offender for the rest of his life and was made the subject of a 10-year sexual harm prevention order.
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