UPDATE: David Hodder died in May 2014

July 2012

77-year-old is jailed for string of sex assaults against boys

A PENSIONER has been jailed for a catalogue of historic sexual offences against boys stretching back decades.

David Hodder, aged 77, of Frome Court, Thornbury, was sentenced to 14 years in prison after he admitted a raft of offences.

Hodder pleaded guilty to three indecency with a child charges, eight serious sexual assaults, three indecent assaults and three sexual assaults.

Judge Michael Roach told him: “These offences are abhorrent. You have blighted (one victim’s) life completely.

“It is clear that your behaviour damaged him in a very severe and permanent way.”

Judge Roach praised the complainants for their bravery in seeing the case through, and commended police for their investigation.

The pensioner was barred from working with children and told to register as a sex offender.

Because one of the victims was abused historically, Hodder falls under an old sentencing regime in which he must serve two-thirds of his jail term, as opposed to one half.

Detective Constable Rob Carter, the police officer in charge of the case, said: “Mr Hodder has played on people’s kindness.

“He has been persistent to gain access to children and has been a skilled groomer for all of his adult life.”

James Ward, prosecuting, said Hodder abused a boy aged eight or nine by touching him sexually after removing his underwear.

“The lad said he was silly,” Mr Ward said. “The defendant bought him items to forget. The lad said he thought the presents put what happened to the back of his mind.”

Due to concerns about Hodder’s contact with the child, police talked to the lad and he said the OAP touched him sexually.

It was only after Hodder’s other victim was stopped for drink driving did that man make a complaint.

The victim described how Hodder, a former TV engineer for Radio Rentals, would sexually abuse him.

Mr Ward said the victim had suffered psychologically as a result and found forming relationships and intimacy difficult