Dunfermline pervert scared of being ‘targeted’ avoids jail and unpaid work
A pervert who sexually assaulted a 14-year-old girl at a party has avoided jail and also unpaid work – because he was scared he would be “targeted” by other offenders.
Derek Lamond, 51, of Arthur Street, Dunfermline, who has a previous conviction for a similar sex offence, appeared for sentencing at the town’s sheriff court.
The family of the victim were furious when they turned up to see Lamond being sentenced last month only to find out he had been given permission to go on holiday.
Lamond, a farm worker, previously admitted that on May 10 at a house in Dunfermline, he sexually assaulted the girl, looked inside her clothing at her breasts and touched her on the breast.
When Lamond finally returned from holiday, defence solicitor Gwen Haggerty asked for the sheriff not to impose unpaid work.
“The concern is he would become a target. He’s already been targeted because of the coverage by the UK database and his car’s been spray-painted,” she said.
“The other offenders would become aware of his offence. There has already been at least one incident.”
Sheriff Derek Reekie said: “This was a very serious offence and, to say the very least, a highly unpleasant one.
“What makes it worse is that it happened in the girl’s own home. You also have a previous conviction for a similar offence in 2009,” he told Lamond.
The sheriff said there was “no doubt” the offence would merit a custodial sentence but he believed that the public could be protected better in the longer term by a community-based disposal.
He said it had been in his mind to impose unpaid work and a restriction of liberty order.
However, instead, he imposed a community payback order with a 10-month tag and no unpaid work.
Lamond will remain on the sex offenders’ register for three years.
Last month, members of the girl’s family were in court for sentencing but Lamont was not.
They heard his attendance had been excused so that he could go on a “pre-booked holiday”.
Anger as child abuser ‘excused’ to go on holiday
A paedophile who abused a young girl was allowed to put off his sentencing – because he wanted to go on holiday.
Derek Lamond, 51, of Dunfermline jetted off to the Channel Islands to be best man at a pal’s wedding instead of facing justice last week.
And the family of his 14-year-old victim were left outraged when he was simply “excused” at Dunfermline Sheriff Court after his lawyer explained the trip had already been booked.
They had travelled to the court to see him punished but will now be forced to wait until June 29 for sentencing.
The youngster’s devastated mum said: “I can’t get my head around it. I felt physically sick when I found out.
“I wanted closure – my bairn wanted closure on it. I’m fuming.
“That’s another week my daughter has to suffer. The sooner he is locked up the better. I hope they throw away the key.”
She said her normally easy-going teen had been left scarred by the assault.
But she added: “I’m so proud of my daughter for telling me what happened that night. She did so well telling the police what he did.”
Three members of the girl’s extended family and a close friend were in court on Wednesday to see Lamond, who had previously admitted a charge of sexual assault, being sentenced by Sheriff Craig McSherry.
But defence lawyer Gwen Haggerty told the court her client was not present as he was on a pre-booked holiday.
The victim’s 49-year-old aunt said afterwards: “We were expecting him to be there, and when he didn’t appear it was a slap in the face.
“It’s shocking. I can’t believe the court accepted it. He should have been there. Instead he’s at a wedding on Guernsey.
“It’s just a shame the bairn has to go through this. It’s that bad she was crying the other day, asking, ‘Do I have to go to court?’”
Lamond will now be sentenced by Sheriff Derek Reekie – who previously heard the case – on Thursday.
It is understood Lamond’s defence contacted Sheriff Reekie to request their client’s absence and this was granted – but the Crown Office were unaware of the decision until Wednesday at court.