May 2018

Child rapist from Bowburn failed to tell young mother he moved in with of his past offending

A SEX offender formed a relationship and briefly lived with the mother of a young child, while using a false name, a court heard.

Christopher Bartley, using his mother’s maiden name of Higginson, did not inform her of his record, and she only found out after a tip-off by an ex-partner.

Durham Crown Court was told she confronted him and police were informed.

Phillip Morley, prosecuting, said Bartley served a five-year prison sentence, followed by five years of extended supervision, after being convicted of the rape of two children when he was aged 15.

But as he was subsequently in relationships with women with young children, police sought a Sexual Harm Prevention Order (SHPO), which was granted in 2015, prohibiting him from having contact or supervision with any child under 16 without the consent of the parent or guardian and only with social services approval.

Bartley, 27, of Tweddle Avenue, Bowburn, admitted breaching the SHPO.

Vic Laffey, mitigating, said Bartley acknowledged a prison sentence is “inevitable”, but added that it was difficult for him to form any relationship once the other party becomes aware of his past.

Jailing him for 32 months, Judge Simon Hickey told Bartley it was “a serious breach” deceiving an innocent woman in the manner he did, earlier this year.

April 2015

Mum allowed convicted child rapist to stay overnight at her home after meeting him on dating site

A convicted child rapist used aliases and spent a night in a mum’s home in the face of a court order meant to protect the public.

The mother let Christopher Bartley stay at her home, where she lived with her two children, after they met on a dating website.

She later said she “felt sick, guilty and scared” when she learned of his past as a child sex offender.

She had been in contact with the 24-year-old, who used the name pucky1990, on the dating site.

He called himself Christopher Puckering, using his mother’s maiden name, Teesside Crown Court heard.

They went out for drinks on September 22 last year and he asked if he could stay at her house for the night as he had nowhere to stay.

She agreed, and left him alone in her home as she went to work the next day.

Police later told her his true identity.

The woman said if she had known he was a registered child sex offender, she would never have allowed him into her home.

Bartley later confessed he did not want her to know his true name, or for her to be able to Google him.

Inquiries revealed he had spoken to another woman on the same site but she declined his repeated requests to meet her.

His stay at the mum’s home and use of the false names, without telling police, flouted the rules of the sex offenders’ register.

Bartley, whose address was recorded in court as Holme House Prison, admitted three counts of failing to comply with notification requirements.

In 2006 he was given an extended 10-year sentence to protect the public, including a five-year custodial term, for a string of sexual offences.

The crimes, which he committed when he was a teenager, included raping an underage girl and boy, and inciting children to engage in sexual activity.

He was released in January 2011, only to be recalled to prison five months later for failing to comply with his licence by failing to tell the Probation Service of a relationship with a woman.

He was let out again in December 2013, and recalled back to his sentence again in September last year for the latest offences.

Now, Bartley is due for release in September this year or January next year.

Christopher McKee, defending, said Bartley accepted he was “extremely foolish” and did not act as he did to have contact with children.

He said Bartley sought refuge with the mother while homeless and adopted his “birth name” because of his embarrassment and shame at his past.

These were his first breaches of this type, eight years after the original sexual offences, and he had not otherwise offended while on licence.

Bartley had a difficult upbringing but had taken positive steps to educate and better himself.

The judge, Recorder Tahir Khan QC, said they were serious offences but they were “not sinister” or meant to lead to offences against young people.

He jailed Bartley for a year.

September 2006

Ten years for attacks on kids

A schoolboy rapist has been locked up for ten years on his 16th birthday for sex attacks on two boys and a girl.

Christopher Bartley, of Briardene Court, Stockton, admitted sex attacks on two boys aged 11 and 13 and raping a 13-year-old girl when he was aged 15.

Prosecutor David Brooke told Teesside Crown Court the rapes took place when Bartley took the youngsters to his home and gave them alcohol while his father was working nights.

The girl was in bed sleeping off a vodka session when she awoke to find Bartley having sex with her.

She screamed and told him to leave her alone but he continued. A fortnight earlier the boys had been forced to perform a sex act on him which under new laws is now also classified as rape.

In total, Bartley pleaded guilty to three charges of rape and four sexual assaults, all committed in January.

He was sentenced to ten years detention – five years extended by five years – and ordered to register as a sex offender for life.

Three psychiatrists told the court Bartley poses a serious risk of harm to others.

Bartley had spent 234 days in custody at Hassockfield Secure Training Centre, near Consett, when he appeared for sentence.

Christine Egerton, defending, said Bartley, who had no previous convictions, had been bullied which had turned him into a bully.

She said: “His behaviour should be viewed in the context of his background and emotional instability.

“Although he does not suffer from any mental illness it is clear he has a special needs education and is a boy who’s had behavioural problems.

“He has had problems obeying rules and problems being bullied. He has had the courage to accept what he has done by his pleas to the court, and he is clearly a young man who has a lot of growing up to do.”

The Recorder of Middlesbrough, Judge Peter Fox QC, told him he had done untold harm to the three youngsters and caused them psychological damage.

He said: “You are 16 years old today. It is greatly to be regretted that on this day I must pass a sentence which both punishes you for your behaviour and which also helps you for a sufficient period of time which, in my judgment, is essential for your training and guidance away from such behaviour as you perpetrated, and to pass such sentence on this day which ensures so far as I am able that you do not do this again.”

* A couple who lied in court for their 15-year-old son at his sex charge trial were blasted by a judge yesterday.

The parents gave the boy a false alibi for when he attacked a 10-year-old girl, but the jury found him guilty.

The boy, who cannot be named for legal reasons, was sentenced to two years detention and training at Teesside Crown Court yesterday for the sexual assault on 20 June last year in Middlesbrough.

The Recorder of Middlesbrough, Judge Peter Fox QC, said that he hoped the youngster would be given the guidance which his parents had failed to give. He told him: “It is to be regretted in the extreme that they should have lied on your behalf, as well as you.”

The boy, from Middlesbrough, must also register as a sex offender for five years.