January 2007

Sex offender to be caged for at least 18 months

A FLASHER with a history of violent sex offences was jailed indefinitely at Bournemouth Crown Court on Thursday.

Sentencing Gareth Newman, 26, to a minimum of 18 months imprisonment, Judge James Meston QC described him as “a significant risk” to all females.

Bournemouth Crown Court heard that Newman, of Recreation Road, Poole, exposed himself to various females over two days last June. The youngest was 11.

He was found guilty of three charges of indecent exposure and one of carrying out a sex act in the presence of a child after a trial in December.

Newman had earlier pleaded guilty to failing to comply with the terms of the Sex Offenders Register by failing to notify police of his address.

The court heard Newman was convicted of three indecent assaults back in 1998 in which violence was used.

Judge Meston also ordered Newman to go on the Sex Offenders Register for life and disqualified him from working with children.

DC Andrew Kennard said Newman typically targeted young girls on their own.

He told the Echo: “I’d like to thank the victims for coming forward and providing the evidence that secured this conviction and the support given to them by their families.

“Gareth Newman committed offences at various times of the day in the Rossmore area of Poole and singled out young girls in their teens, usually on their own.

“No-one – whatever their age – deserves to be a victim of crime that involves someone making inappropriate remarks, intentionally exposing themselves or touching another person in an improper way.

“This case sends out a clear message that all crimes of a sexual nature are taken seriously by Dorset Police.”

Speaking afterwards, the mother of a 13-year-old victim said: “This incident has had a major impact on my daughter and my family.

“My daughter was 13 when it happened and was a normal outgoing girl who enjoyed going out to meet her friends.

“Since the incident she has become much more aware of what is going on around her and really doesn’t like to walk alone, even in daylight.

“Every time she goes out she is reminded of what happened – especially as it happened so close to where we live.

“In the weeks before the court case she suffered from panic attacks and it has really affected her everyday life.

“I hope that the sentence given to the offender reflects what he has done to these young girls. I am delighted with what the police have done – we couldn’t have asked for anything more.”