November 2016

Man kept in custody after being found guilty of sexual abuse on young child

A MAN who repeatedly sexually abused a young girl when she was five or six years old has been remanded in custody by a judge.

Barry Read’s behaviour was first uncovered when he sold a camera to a relative and it was found to have intimate footage of the youngster on it.

But when the girl found out years later why her family no longer let her see the 63-year-old, she revealed that he had abused her when he babysat for her.

Read, of Brem Hill Close, Penhill, denied the offending but was found guilty following a trial at Swindon Crown Court.

Hannah Squire, prosecuting, told the jury of five women and seven men how Read and his wife used to look after the child between 2004 and 2006.

While she was at their house she would go up into the loft area which had been converted into a small office, with a computer.

For much of the time the girl, now a teenager, would play age appropriate games which he had put on the machine.

But as she was playing them she would often sit on his knee, she told the court, and while there he would often rub his hands up and down her legs.

He would then touch her inappropriately and on one occasion he also put some pornography on the computer.

As he watched the images the jury was told that he performed a sex act on himself while the child was in the room, gratifying himself with the knowledge she was there.

He also repeatedly touched her inappropriately while downstairs in the house when his wife was out.

The abuse stopped when she was six years old, and at the time the youngster did not know why.

Miss Squire said what she was not aware of was that Read had sold a camcorder to a relative and when the buyer first went to use it he found a cassette inside it.

He viewed the tape and found it not only contained pornography but also a short film of the little girl, focussing on her crotch area.

Recognising the child, the relative contacted her family who immediately stopped Read and his wife looking after the girl.

The defendant was also spoken to about it by the police but no action was taken against him as he explained it away.

“It was not until 2014 that she was told about the video. That didn’t prompt her to complain,” Miss Squire said.

“Later, in June 2015 she plucked up the courage to tell what happened to her all those years ago.”

When Read was questioned he accepted he had spent time in the loft with the child using the computer but insisted nothing untoward took place.

He also admitted having the footage on the camcorder but said he could not recall filming it and did not have a sexual interest in children.

Read denied four counts of sexual assault and one of engaging in sexual activity in the presence of a child.

Judge Sir John Royce remanded him in custody and adjourned the case to Friday November 25 when he will pass sentence sitting at Bristol Crown Court.