Febuary 2002

Probation for child abuser

Brian Downs

A child abuser who sexually abused a schoolgirl over a number of years escaped a prison sentence after two states members gave character references and background reports were presented to the royal court

Brian Downs (55), a former taxi driver admitted indecent assault and procuring a act of gross indecency on a teenage girl between 24’th November 1988 and 23’rd November 1991

Downs was put on probation for 3 years and was ordered to carry out the maximum community service order of 240 hours for his assaults on the girl who was then aged between 13 and 15 years old

Character references were handed to the court by St John deputy Phil Rondel and St John constable Michael Touzel

Crown advocate Sally Sharpe said the acts took place in Downs car while parked at night at Sorel point, St John. She said Downs would warn his victim never to tell anyone because ‘they would not believe her’

The crown had moved for a 2 year jail term

Defence counsel advocate Rebecca Juste said her client had a complicated history, and had been abused himself as a child

She said Downs also had a psychiatric and psychological reports for the court to read

Commissioner Francis Hamon said it was a particularly sordid case before he announced the lenient sentence