July 1996

Fury over 4 years for sex monster

A sex-fiend baby-sitter who tried to rape a girl of four escaped a life sentence yesterday … by saying he was SORRY.

Instead, Lord Hamilton ordered that twisted Martin MacPherson be caged for just four years.

Three weeks ago the judge warned 19-year-old MacPherson, now of Merrow, Surrey, he could be jailed for life after a social worker said he might strike again.

But MacPherson – who had refused to accept his guilt even thought he’d admitted the offence – confessed to a psychiatrist that he was disgusted at what he’d done.

After sentence, the little girl’s mum ran weeping from the High Court in Edinburgh to be comforted by friends.

She hit out: “How can the judge threaten him with life and then give him four years just because he co-operated?”

The girl’s parents had asked jobless MacPherson to look after her for an evening.

But when they returned to their Aviemore home, the tearful youngster begged:

“Don’t get that babysitter again, I didn’t like it.”

She had woken up and said she’d had a nightmare, and MacPherson had put her on his knee and said he would make it go away before attempting to rape her.

Lord Hamilton told MacPherson, that a jail term was needed, “to mark the horror of all right thinking people for such a crime committed on such a small child.”