August 2016

Man jailed for ‘disgusting and revolting’ sexual abuse of two children


A 54-YEAR-OLD man has been jailed for three years for the “disgusting and revolting” sexual abuse of two children 40 years ago when he was himself a teenager.

The boy and girl who suffered at the hands of Gareth McGuinness in the 1970s stood up in court to relate the “life sentence” of horror and misery he had condemned them to.

Now middle-aged, they told of the long shadow cast over their lives by what McGuinness did to them when they were small children and he was their older babysitter.

McGuinness, of Burton Street, East Bowling, Bradford, pleaded guilty to eight counts of indecently assaulting a boy aged nine to 11 and seven offences of indecently assaulting a girl under 13. He was aged 11 to 17 at the time.

He began molesting the boy when they were play fighting but the abuse escalated to forcing him to perform a sex act on him.

The girl was only four when McGuinness began abusing her. He would remove her underwear and sexually assault her until she cried.

The man, reading aloud his victim personal statement, said: “It has been a rollercoaster of emotions – anger, shame and embarrassment.”

There wasn’t a day when he did not think about what the defendant had done, he said

Turning to the dock, he stated: “I want to know why you turned into such a monster.”

The man said he had been suicidal and had received counselling. He was on long-term anti-depressants and did not socialise.

“I no longer trust people in general because of this,” he said. “My life has been filled with pain and horror.”

The woman said: “All my life I have carried this shame and felt dirty and no good.”

She turned to drugs when very young and had regularly self-harmed, cutting herself with a razor blade and wishing she was dead.

McGuinness’s lawyer, Tom Rushbrooke, said he had led a blameless life since.

Judge Jonathan Rose labelled the offences “disgusting and revolting”. “This was repeated, prolonged sexual abuse over a long period of time,” he said.

He made a Sexual Harm Prevention Order without limit of time and McGuinness must register as a sex offender for an indefinite period.