November 2016

Former school caretaker jailed after being found guilty of sexually assaulting young girl


A former school caretaker who worked in Staffordshire has been jailed after being found guilty of sexually assaulting a young girl.

Eric Darby, who held the job at the school for 10 years, was sentenced to five years in prison yesterday. Retired Darby, aged 74, had denied four offences of sexual assault on a child under 13 but was found guilty by a jury.

Stoke-on-Trent Crown Court heard how Darby’s ‘considerable time’ at the school had made him into a well-liked local figure. The abuse, which took place in May last year, did not happen at the school.

The mother of Darby’s victim told the court how family life had been torn apart since the abuse – once enjoyable family outings no longer take place because the youngster does not wants to go out.

She said: “We can never get back what we have lost. Our children will never be the same as before. The man who did this to my baby girl has shown no remorse. I hope he never gets the chance to ruin anyone’s life.”

Once released from prison, Darby, who had been living in Rose Law, Shrewsbury, before he was sentenced, must not return to the area where his victim lived under the condition of a Sexual Harm Prevention Order.

He will also need the approval of Staffordshire Police’s chief constable or Staffordshire social services to meet any children under 16.

And he must not visit or loiter near playgrounds, swimming pools or areas where children might be.