July 2017

Former headteacher is spared jail after being caught with indecent images of girls

A former headteacher from the Hope Valley has narrowly been spared from jail after he was caught with indecent pictures of young girls.

Derby Crown Court heard today, Friday, July 28, how Simon Hill, 58, of Fidlers Close, Bamford, in the Hope Valley, pleaded guilty to possessing 21 category C pictures of nude girls and also admitted possessing four separate extreme pornographic images involving adult oral sex with animals.

Prosecuting solicitor Mark Knowles said Hill has pleaded guilty on the basis his interest does not lie with pre-teen girls but only with young girls within naturist material involving nude images but this still crossed the line of possessing indecent material.

He added: “He was arrested after a search warrant in October, 2015, by officers at his home address in Bamford.”

Mr Knowles said police carried out the search after intelligence was received concerning Hill’s conversations via a website.

The court heard how Hill was previously a headteacher in the Barnsley area but resigned in 2010 and he was also involved in the Diocese and was a youth leader.

Hill admitted to police he had used a particular website and he had been involved in “racy” conversations.

Mr Knowles said police checked Hill’s computer and mobile phones before any indecent images were finally found in files which had originally been inaccessible.

The images included 21 category C images of girls, which is regarded as the lower category of indecent images, involving nudity and four images of an extreme pornographic nature involving adult oral sex with animals, according to Mr Knowles.

Hill pleaded guilty to possessing the 21 category C images and pleaded guilty to possessing the other extreme pornographic images. 

Judge Jonathan Bennett said the Crown Prosecution Service accepted Hill’s interest did not lie with pre-teen girls and his main interest concerned naturist material.

However, he told Hill: “The court knows and the public is concerned about images such as these which involve real children abused in order to satisfy the perverted desires of people such as you who indulge fantasies. These are not just pictures these are real children.”

Judge Bennett sentenced Hill to four months of custody suspended for 18 months with a 20 day Rehabilitation Activity Requirement. Hill was warned if he re-offends in the next 18 months he can expect the suspended custodial sentence to be activated.

The defendant was also ordered to complete 120 hours of unpaid work and placed under a Sexual Harm Prevention Order for seven years. Following the hearing, Hill declined to comment.

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