May 2018

Prison for kitchen porter who attempted to meet ‘teenage boy’ after grooming

A 44-year-old kitchen porter who sent “very sexualised” messages and tried to meet a boy he believed to be 14 – but was in fact a member of the public using a fake profile – has been jailed for nine months.

Paul Richard Heptinstall appeared in Magistrate’s Court yesterday after pleading guilty to one charge of attempting to meet the faux teenager following sexual grooming.

The sentence made him the seventh man to be snared by ‘paedophile hunter’ Cheyenne O’Connor, an adult woman who has been posing as teenagers online in a bid to catch potential child groomers.

Following the sentencing, she stated that he was “the worst” she had communicated with.

Legal Adviser Susie Sharpe told the Magistrate’s Court that Heptinstall started talking to a boy named Luke on Grindr, a social media site used by gay men to meet other men, on 20 March. That ‘boy’ was in fact Ms O’Connor, using a fake account.

Ms Sharpe told Court that it was quite clear from the conversation recorded on the site that Heptinstall was aware of the boy’s age. She added: “It is also clear that the conversation became sexualised very quickly and arrangements were made to meet.”

The Court heard that when Heptinstall arrived at the location where the meeting had been arranged, the person posing as Luke took photos of him.

Heptinstall was then arrested on suspicion of attempting to meet a 14-year-old boy following sexual grooming and remanded on custody.

Ms Sharpe that while he initially denied the offence and then tried to give a different account, he eventually made full admissions.

Ms Sharpe refused to read the messages exchanged between Heptinstall and the boy but said that the exchanges were of a very sexualised nature.

She said that there were enough grounds to seek a restraining order and that a risk had clearly been identified in a Social Enquiry Report. 

Assistant Magistrate Peter Harris told Heptinstall he would have to appear on the Sex Offenders Register for five years, before he could be able to apply for the mention to be removed. 

He also imposed a restraining order under which Heptinstall has to allow officers to see any device he uses to access the internet. Heptinstall is also prevented from using any software that can disguise his activities on those devices or delete his history.

Handing out his sentence, the Assistant Magistrate said: “A number of such cases have come before the court in recent months. A sentencing policy has been established.”

He sentenced Heptinstall to nine months in prison.

April 2018

Man pleads guilty to sexually grooming boy

A pervert has appeared in Jersey’s Magistrate’s Court for trying to meet a 14-year-old boy after ‘grooming’ him online for sexual activity

44-year-old Paul Richard Heptinstall who is originally from Wakefield, West Yorkshire yesterday admitted to attempting to meet the boy on the 20 March 2018.

Heptinstall attempted to meet who he believed was a 14 year old child in a wooded area after telling him he had already had sexual intercourse with two other underage boys.

However, the boy did not exist and it was infact Jersey paedophile hunter Cheyenne O’Connor who had set the profile up to catch online sexual predators.

The court was told that Heptinstall also sent pictures of his manhood to the profile he thought was a schoolboy

Magistrate Bridget Shaw has remanded Heptinstall in custody until his sentencing on 1 May 2018.