June 2009

Man who indecently assaulted two girls jailed

A WINDOW cleaner has been jailed for indecently assaulting two girls.

David Walter Howe, 41, of Stephen Street, Taunton, attacked his first victim about 23 years ago and assaulted the other ten to 14 years ago, Taunton Crown Court heard.

Both victims had been too afraid to report Howe at the time and police only discovered his crimes when they were investigating another matter.

Howe has maintained his innocence throughout, but he was found guilty at trial of four counts of indecent assault.

He was this week sentenced to three 18 months sentences and one of 12 months – all to run concurrently.

Referring to the first attack on a 12-year-old in 1986, Ian Fenny, prosecuting, said: “He effectively chased her round a house where she was babysitting.”

Howe then pinned the girl to the floor and groped her over her clothes.

The court heard that during a later period, Howe sat the other young girl on his knee and touched her under her clothes on a number of occasions.

Malcolm Galloway, defending, said Howe, who was “acquitted of more serious offences”, stopped when the second victim asked and was a man of good character.

Jailing Howe, Judge Graham Hume Jones told him he had shown “an abuse of trust” because he had known his victims through friends.

Howe, who shook his head as he was sentenced, was ordered to sign the Sex Offenders’ Register for ten years.

As he was taken down, a number of people in the public gallery shouted abuse at him.