A takeaway worker sexually assaulted a 12-year-old girl in front of her friends after they came to his aid.
Afraz Shoaib Asif, 32, of Golden Hill Lane, Leyland, grabbed the young girl after she shouted at him to come out of the road, where the youngsters saw him drunkenly wandering in front of oncoming traffic.
As he groped inside her clothing, he was heard to offer her a free takeaway and at one point told a friend on his mobile phone: “There’s children here, come down.”
Jailing him for 21 months, Judge Ian Leeming QC said: “Any young person is entitled to walk in the street without fear of being groped and fondled in this way.”
Asif, who previously escaped from the dock, appeared handcuffed to a guard during the proceedings at Preston Crown Court, where he was ordered to sign the sex offenders’ register for 10 years.
Jacob Dyer, prosecuting, said: “The defendant had been to his ex-wife’s address and was obviously worked up and it’s clear he was drunk. He left around 6.30pm and by 8pm was near to Steeley Lane in Chorley.
“At that time the 12-year-old was with a number of young friends and they saw the defendant in the road, he was obviously drunk and they were concerned as he was in front of oncoming traffic.
“They called out to him he acknowledged them and he came out of the road.
“But the defendant approached one girl, put his left hand around her waist, held her tightly, put his lips on her neck and made a lewd comment to her.”
He then put his hand in her top.
Mr Dyer added: “She was struggling to break free from him. At one point he had his hand cupped on her bottom. Her friends were there and witnessed it and they were telling the defendant to leave her alone and calling him a pervert.
“At one point he was on his mobile phone telling the other person: ‘There’s children here, come down.’ He seemed to be offering here a free meal from Chesters.”
The court heard the youngster had suffered general anxiety and embarrassment about what took place.
Asif was abusive and insulting towards police when arrested a short time later and denied the offence in interview.
He later admitted sexual assault.
Judge Ian Leeming QC, said: “The sexual assault was committed when you were in drink, in emotional turmoil to do with your domestic circumstances. and towards a girl who was in a group doing nothing but trying to help you. “
He imposed a five-year restraining order banning him contacting the girl.