October 2013

Dangerous Bideford sex offender sent to mental hospital

A DANGEROUS sex offender has been sent to a mental hospital after the mother of his intended victim turned detective to track him down.

Reginald Reed, 34, used a computer at the supported adult care accommodation where he lived in Bideford to contact a 14-year-old girl.

He started sending her scores of obscene and sexualised messages but his attempts to groom her were interrupted when the teenager’s mother spotted the traffic on her daughter’s computer.

The mother took over the correspondence and used it to find out enough details to put police on the track of Reed.

He tried deleting his phone and computer memories but eventually admitted sending the messages.

Reed has been sent for treatment, including specialist sex offender therapy, under an interim Mental Health Act order and a judge at Exeter Crown Court will decide later whether he should be held there indefinitely.

Reed, of Grange Road, Bideford, admitted attempting to incite a child to engage in sexual activity and was sent to the St Andrews Hospital at Northampton, where a sex offender’s treatment programme is available.

Judge Phillip Wassall made the hospital order after reading three reports from psychiatrists which showed Reed has learning difficulties, dissocial disorder, and a schizophrenic illness.

He told Reed he posed a high risk of committing sexual offences involving children.

Sean Brunton, for the prosecution, said many of the hundreds of texts and emails he sent the girl were of a sexualised and graphic nature.

He said: “It went on for a considerable period of time before the mother notified the police who were able to trace Reed.”

Mr Brunton said Reed wiped the memories of his devices and when interviewed he blamed his behaviour on his mental condition.

He said all he wanted to do was to have fun and have a girlfriend but his condition meant he was not responsible for his behaviour.

Nigel Wraith, for the defence, said all the psychiatrists who had seen Reed concluded that he was suffering from a number of mental conditions which could be improved by treatment.

He said none suggested a restriction order which would put his release date in the hands of a tribunal but the unit where he is to be treated had been chosen because it is considered secure.

August 2013

Judge orders psychiatric assessment on Bideford internet predator

A Judge has ordered a psychiatric assessment on a ‘dangerous’ internet predator who was trapped by the mother of the teenage girl he was trying to groom online.

Reginald Reed was branded as a danger to children after he sent sexual messages to a young girl without realising they were being intercepted by her suspicious mother.

He will now be assessed by a psychiatrist with a view to him taking part in a sex offenders’ course while an in-patient at a mental hospital.

Reed, aged 32, has been told he will probably be released on a community order once arrangements for his treatment have been sorted out.

A judge at Exeter Crown Court said he needs more information about what steps will be taken to reduce any risk before he allows his release.

Reed, of Grange Road, Bideford, who has learning difficulties, admitted attempting to incite a child to engage in sexual activity was remanded in custody.

Judge Francis Gilbert, QC, said the case raises serious concerns and would merit a jail sentence of around two years if Reed is not made subject of hospital order.

He said:”This man undertook persistent and very frequent contact over a considerable period of time communicating with what he thought was a young girl.

“He did not know it, but it was in fact her mother who was concerned about what was happening. What he was saying to her was completely out of order and intimidating.”

He said he did not think a guardianship order which was proposed initially by the doctors who examined Reed was the right way of dealing with the case.

He said:”A guardianship order is not appropriate either as punishment or for the protection of the public.

“The assessment of the multi agency public protection team is that he poses a very high risk of harm to children and is manipulative.”

Mr Nigel Wraith, defending, said the best way of protecting the public was through Reed undertaking a sex offender’s treatment programme which could only take place in custody if he received a much longer sentence than the offence merited.

March 2013

Bideford man Reginald Reed admits sex offence

A Bideford man has been bailed after admitting contacting young people through the internet.

Reginald Reed, 32, of Grange Road, Bideford, admitted inciting a child to engage in sexual activity and his case was adjourned for pre-sentence reports.

He was released on bail by Judge Francis Gilbert, QC, and told he must cooperate with the probation service in the preparation of a pre sentence report.

The case concerns contacts he is alleged to have made through the internet.