January 2016

Jail for 60-year-old after sex attack on schoolgirl in his car

A 60-year-old man caught carrying out a sex attack on a schoolgirl has been jailed for 12 months.

Steven Palmer carried out the attack in his car at a park in Gedney but was interrupted by a passer-by who approached the vehicle as it was parked in a prohibited area. 

The passer-by was shocked by what he saw when he looked into the car.

Sarah Munro, prosecuting, said: “The man saw what he thought was a girl aged 11 to 17 years old. To avoid embarrassment he simply said ‘good morning’ and went on his way.

“The defendant was startled and drove off.”

The passer-by was so concerned that he took down the registration number of Palmer’s car and reported the incident to police.

The victim later told a school friend what had happened and after police became involved, she told them she was unable to fight off Palmer because he was so much bigger than herself.

When Palmer was arrested he made no comment when he was interviewed.

Palmer, of The Rookery, Lutton, admitted a charge of sexual assault on November 11, 2014.

He was jailed for one year and given a sexual harm prevention order which bans him from being alone with any person under 18 unless they are accompanied by a parent or guardian who knows of Palmer’s previous sexual offending.

Judge Simon Hirst, passing sentence, told him: “The fact is that this was in a public place and you have targeted a vulnerable person.”