April 2021

‘Sex is fine and nothing to be afraid of’: Middlesbrough dad, 53, caught grooming 13-year-old ‘girl’

A Middlesbrough dad was snared by police while attempting to meet an underage girl.

Mark Feasey thought he was chatting online to a 13-year-old child during first coronavirus lockdown.

However the 53-year-old was actually communicating with an undercover police officer.

Teesside Crown Court heard how Feasey first messaged the fake profile in April last year.

Chris Baker, prosecuting, said the officer responded and he asked her to contact him What’s App.

He said: “She did so, making it clear she was 13 years old and she sent an image clearly of a girl around 13 years old.

“Between 9th April and 12th May they continued communicating on nine separate days.

“There are a number of days when it’s suggested that the two of them meet up.”

Mr Baker said that they agreed to meet at Albert Park in Middlesbrough on April 23 but it did not take place.

He said: “The decoy makes it clear in her message that she is a young girl living alone with her mother, her mother works long hours.

“During these messages he asked for pictures of the girl which are sent and he sends a picture of himself.

“He is keen to make sure she does not talk to anyone about him and asked her to delete the image of himself.

“The conversation became more sexual as they progress.”

Mr Baker said that by the time they agree to meet on April 23 there has been a conversation in which Feasey told the girl: “Sex is fine and nothing to be afraid of. When you meet a guy you like just be safe and sensible.”

He said that the decoy responded to the defendant by asking ‘should I bring a condom to the meeting?’

Feasey replied “your call, I don’t pressure you. If you feel the urge to kiss me then go with your urge, no pressure from me to do it”.

Mr Baker said Feasey went on to say he might get into trouble because of his age and it may be seen as grooming.

He said he told the ‘girl’ not to tell anyone as they could get into trouble for it if they meet.

Mr Baker said: “We went on to give advice about how to access pornography and asked her if she wants to access pornography with him.”

He told the court that Feasey was arrested on May 26 last year and said he was “remorseful”.

Mr Baker said he claimed he had cancelled the meeting on 23 April as he realised he was wrong and accepted he had messaged her after that date.

He said: “He said he was disgusted with himself.”

Feasey, of The Coppice, Coulby Newham, pleaded guilty to attempting to meet a child under 16 following grooming at a previous hearing.

The court in Middlesbrough heard how he was made subject to sex offender notifications after entering the guilty plea but had already breached the order twice.

Feasey did this by staying over at a woman’s home, where there were children present, on two occasions.

Mr Baker told the court how he claimed he had been given the notification requirement but hadn’t read them fully.

Judge Jonathan Carroll told Feasey: “There were nine separate days when communications took place within a relatively short period of time.

“The communications extended to you trying to meet her. The event, thank goodness, did not happen, you say you cancelled it because you realised what you were doing was wrong.

“If you realised, it didn’t stop you continuing to communicate. Some six further communications take place with her after you had not attended that meeting.”

Judge Carroll described Feasey’s response to the question about the condom as “deeply manipulative”.

He said: “That is not a decision that a child should ever be expected to make or should make.”

The judge told Feasey that he did not accept that he was unaware he was breaching the sex offender notification requirement.

He said: “I simply do not accept you did not know, that is nonsense.”

Judge Carroll told the court that he will suspend Feasey’s prison sentence so he can undergo treatment.

He sentenced him to two years in prison suspended for two years.

Feasey ordered complete a sex offender treatment programme, 30 rehabilitation activity requirement days and 200 hours unpaid work.

He was given a three month curfew and must abide by sexual harm prevention order for 10 years as well as sex offender notification requirements.