Paedophile tried to snath three year old girl
A paedophile tried to snatch a three-year-old girl in her pushchair at a Middlesbrough shopping centre while her father chatted to a friend.
Brian Willis grabbed the tot’s pushchair on October 19 last year at the Captain Cook Shopping Square while her dad had his back turned for just moments in Greggs.
The 78-year-old had previously been convicted of possessing indecent images of children and his attempt to snatch the child was described by the girl’s mum as ‘every parent’s nightmare’.
Sick Willis had also twice breached orders protecting children by buying ice creams for kids – once near a school and another time at Stewart Park in Middlesbrough.
Teesside Crown Court heard the shocking details of the abduction on Friday.
Joanne Kidd prosecuting said: “They were in the shopping centre and [the child’s father] had turned his back to speak to his friend who was in Greggs
“Mr Willis had been sitting nearby. When he saw his back was turned he took the opportunity to get up from where he was sitting and put his hand on the pushchair and started to push it away.”
Fortunately the little girl’s father saw what was happening, the court heard, and “remonstrated” with Willis, who said, “I just want to take the baby for a walk”.
The father then forced Willis’ hands off the pushchair, said Ms Kidd, and the paedophile then walked off to other shops.
The court heard Willis himself called 999 and said to the call handler: “I did something wrong, I tried to abduct someone and tried to push her away
“I don’t feel guilty.”
When police spoke to him, he reportedly said: “Why do I do the things I do?” and reiterated he had tried to abduct a child.
Willis admitted abducting a child and breaching a sex offender order before a trial was due to take place in September.
The court heard he was made the subject of a Sexual Harm Prevention Order in 2009 after being caught in possession of indecent photos of children.
Ms Kidd said in 2011 his offender management team raised concerns about his behaviour after Willis gave “a very vivid description to police officers of the abduction of girls” with a sexual motivation.
The mum of the child said her “heart sank” when she found out about the incident and that it made her “feel sick to the stomach”.
She said that the incident is “every parent’s worst nightmare” and that she now “thinks the worst of people” while suffering from frequent nightmares.
The mum added that she “dreads to think what would have happened” if Willis managed to take her child away.
Sentencing Willis, of Linthorpe Road, Middlesbrough, Recorder Little QC, said he had a host of relevant previous convictions, including one of gross indecency with a man in a public toilet dating back to 1985.
In 2011, he told police he’d been in the company of a man who had “fantasies about abducting young girls” and that he was “worried” about the school holidays and “children being around”.
Recorder Little QC told Willis he had “no doubt you would have sexually assaulted that child” and called him a “dangerous man”, to which Willis replied: “rubbish”.