March 2010


A Cumbrian man who sexually abused a young girl 16 years ago has been locked up indefinitely for abusing another one.

Donald ‘Peter’ Moody was given a suspended prison sentence in 1994 for molesting a girl.

And yesterday he was sentenced for doing almost exactly the same thing to another girl in Whitehaven in 2007.

Moody had found guilty by a jury at Carlisle Crown Court last year of five charges of sexual assault on the girl in west Cumbria.

Passing sentence yesterday, Judge Barbara Forrester said the 47-year-old was such a danger to young children he had to be held in prison until the authorities are satisfied he is safe to be released.

He will have to serve at least 27 months in prison before even being considered for parole and even then will be released only when he is no longer considered to be a danger.

He was also ordered to register as a sex offender indefinitely and banned from having unsupervised contact with children.

He will be on licence for life, so would be automatically recalled to prison if he ever committed any more offences.

Moody, of Hollins Park, Moor Row, near Whitehaven, appeared in the courtroom via a video link from Durham Prison because, being confined to a wheelchair and suffering from angina, he was not thought fit enough to travel.

During the trial last year the jury heard the five charges Moody faced were just specimen offences, chosen to reflect his behaviour over nine months in 2007 when he sexually abused the girl in the room he used as an office at his home.

After shutting the door and pulling the blinds down, he touched her under her clothes, telling her she was “special”.

The girl told the court it happened once a week at first and then more frequently and went on for nearly a year.

She said she knew what he was doing to her was wrong, but at the time she had not appreciated how wrong it was.

Sentencing Moody – who was arrested on October 16, 2008 – Judge Forrester said she took into account the fact that his ill health meant a prison sentence would be harder for him than for able bodied people.

But she said she doubted whether he was in fact as incapacitated as he claimed to be – especially as his neighbours had contacted the court to say they had seen him walking around and working at a time when, he claimed, he had been confined to a wheelchair.

DC Andrea Davidson, of West Cumbria Public Protection Unit, led the police inquiry.

After the sentencing, she said Moody was a despicable man who had stolen the innocence of a young girl.

“I hope, now that justice has been done, the victim and her family can begin to rebuild their lives.

“This sentence should also serve as a stark reminder for anybody engaging in similar activity that your actions will never be tolerated – you will be caught and prosecuted and face a miserable life behind bars.

“We are dedicated to preventing sex offences against children and where they are reported, to identifying offenders and bringing them to justice.

“The people of West Cumbria can be confident that we have dedicated teams of specially trained officers who investigate these sorts of crimes, working closely with victims and their families to ensure they are supported whilst we build cases to put offenders behind bars.”