June 2016

Man who had sex with girl, 13, is ordered to live in Plymouth

A sex offender has been ordered to live in Plymouth after he failed to tell police about his whereabouts when he became homeless.

Aaron Gale was put on the sex offenders register last year after he admitted having unprotected sex with a 13-year-old girl.

He was supposed to tell police about where he was living at all times but failed to do so after becoming homeless and sleeping rough in Torquay.

Gale, aged 23, admitted breaching the terms of the sex offenders’ register and was curfewed for three months by Judge Graham Cottle at Exeter Crown Court.

The judge imposed a community order on Gale after being told he has already served 36 days in prison on remand after being arrested by police in May.

The order means Gale will have to live at the Lawson House hostel in Paradise Place, Plymouth, for the next three months and possibly for up to a year.

The judge said:”There does not seem to be any escalation of risk and stable accommodation at the hostel should be a protective factor.”

Mr Deri Matthews, prosecuting, said Gale broke the reporting conditions of the sex offenders register after losing his accommodation in Torbay and started to sleep rough.

He went to the police station to report that he had become homeless but should have gone back every few days to inform them of his movements.

Mr Barry White, defending, said Gale had been put in an impossible position because the register requires him to have an address and could not comply once he became homeless.

He said Gale continued to attend supervision meetings with the probation service and is scheduled to undertake a sex offenders’ treatment programme in October.

He said the probation service recommended the move to the hostel in Plymouth because they identified Gale’s homelessness as a factor which contributed to his chaotic lifestyle.

Mr White said:”The position he found himself in was Kafkaesque. He was homeless and was arrested for failing to tell the police where he was or was not living. He is anxious and willing to go to Lawson House.”

Gale received a suspended sentence at Exeter Crown Court in August 2015 after being found guilty of sexual activity with a 13-year-old girl.

July 2015

Suspended sentence for man who had sex with 13-year-old

A 22-YEAR-OLD man who poses a risk to teenage girls has walked free from court after being sentenced for having sex with a 13-year-old.

Aaron Gale, of Willow Avenue, Torquay, was found guilty of sexual activity with a child at the end of a trial at Exeter Crown Court in June.

Gale had denied the charge and the girl had to go into the witness box to give evidence and be cross examined by the defence.

The jury was told that although the girl had wanted to be close with the older man, who was 21 at the time, she had been too scared to tell him she did not want sex.

Judge Francis Gilbert QC said there was a ‘big disparity in age’ between Gale and his victim which made the offence more serious.

However Gale walked away with a suspended jail sentence after the judge heard from the defence barrister that although the defendant was ‘chronologically older’ he was also immature for his age and battled with depression.

Adrian Chaplin, mitigating for Gale, said it was a ‘curious case’ in which Gale had ‘succumbed to temptation’.

“This is not an especially mature offender,” he added.

“His battles with depression and life are such as to take away the superficial assessment of age as being equivalent to other people.”

Judge Gilbert said the girl had been too scared to say ‘no’ to Gale.

“Your client called her a liar,” he told Mr Chaplin.

“He knew what he’d done and this was serious abuse of her,” the judge added.

The judge said he had considered giving the Gale a tougher sentence before imposing a two year jail sentence suspended for two years. Gale was also told to go on a sex offenders course as part of his rehabilitation.

Judge Gilbert told him: “You knew perfectly well you’d had sexual intercourse with her but by denying it caused the girl to be cross examined to the effect that she was lying.

“That must have been pretty unpleasant for her.

“She may have been wanting to be with you but this was not sex in any loving or continuing way.

“You were considerably older than her and should have been there to protect her from her own folly if that is what it was.”

The court was told at the time of the offence Gale was on bail for threatening to beat up another woman.

A pre-sentence report by the probation service said he was a high risk of serious harm to teenage girls.

June 2015

Devon man found guilty of having sex with girl of 13

A 22-year-old man has been found guilty of having sex with a 13-year-old girl after they shared a bunk bed at a friend’s house.

Aaron Gale had been watching a film with friends at the house in Torbay when they were joined by a group of girls including the young victim.

She told Exeter Crown Court how Gale had unprotected sex with her after climbing into the same bunk when she went to bed after watching the movie called Playback Season.

Gale claimed there had been no sexual contact but was convicted in less than 30 minutes after the jury heard that forensic tests showed samples of his DNA on the girl’s underwear.

Gale, of Willow Avenue, Torquay, denied sexual activity with a child but was found guilty after a three day trial.

Judge Francis Gilbert, QC, adjourned the case for the preparation of a probation pre-sentence report.

During the trial the girl said she had been reluctant to make a complaint at first because she was worried about being grounded by her mother.

Gale denied having sex with the girl and said his DNA must have got onto her clothing by other means. He said he knew the girl was 13 but would never have sex with anyone that age, because it was ‘sick’.