November 2018

Meet the Harlow man who sent a ’13-year-old girl’ pictures of his penis

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A Harlow man sent pictures of his penis to someone he believed was a 13 year-old-girl.

Earlier this year Shaun Morris, 41, attempted to engage in sexual conversations with two 13-year-old girls and sent pictures of himself as well as his penis.

The conversations he initiated with the first girl occurred between January 2 and January 8 of this year while he also attempted to engage at the end of January as well as at in March.

Morris then had gratuitous conversations with a second 13-year-old between February 10 and February 17.

However, unbeknown to the 41-year-old, of The Lawn in Harlow, the two 13-year-old’s were actually decoy online profiles that had been set up by an online predator hunting group, Soloceptors.

“Hi you look nice”

Morris’ first engagement with whom he believed was a 13-year-old girl began at the start of January when he messaged the decoy on an online app with his personal profile, named Shaun M.

According to prosecutor Charlotte Davison, Morris started the chat by telling the fake 13-year-old “hi you look nice”.

The girl, who was in fact one of the adult online hunters, replied and told him that she was 13.

In response Morris then told her that she looked older – and that it was a good thing – and that he was 40 and from Essex.

Throughout that day the 41-year-old continued to exchange messages with the online profile including telling the 13-year-old that he was trying to behave himself while talking to her, before blaming it on his “horny thoughts.”

After the ‘girl’ explained she didn’t know what horny meant, Morris said that it meant sexual.

“Have you ever seen a d*** in person?”

Morris continued engaging with the ‘13-year-old’ online before asking her if she had ever seen a penis in person.

The following day he then said that he could show her his penis and that it would be their secret.

After the ‘girl’ replied that she was scared to see it Morris then sent a picture of his own penis.

The conversations between the pair continued until January 7 – with Morris also adding that had the two been closer he would have brought her an umbrella to stop her getting wet in the rain.

The messages then stopped between them though he tried to initiate contact again at the end of the month and again in March.

However, the adult on the other end of the profile didn’t respond.

Prosecutor Ms Davison then proceeded to read out the second encounter to Chelmsford Crown Court at Morris’ sentencing hearing today (Monday, November 12).

She also added that the 41-year-old had put the behaviour down to being in a “cannabis-infused haze”

The second online profile was also a decoy 13-year-old girl – this time from Sheffield – and Morris began messaging her on February 10.

This decoy immediately replied that she was 14 and, again, Morris mentioned that he was 40.

On February 12 he sent her a picture of her face before telling her if she was closer he would offer to teach her how to kiss a boy.

He then told her that if she was a year older, sex would not be an issue and – once she reiterated that she was 13 – he said: “oh yeah I remember now, you have got a few more years.”

Later on he then sent another picture of his penis.

“He is a man that suffers with severe anxiety”

Morris was finally caught after the online predator hunters tracked his home address and confronted him on the street – filming the whole thing and posting it online.

In the dock during his sentencing hearing at Chelmsford Crown Court, Morris stared down at the floor as Emma Davenport, defending him, rose to address Judge David Turner QC.

During mitigation she explained that Morris suffered a multitude of complex mental health issues including mental health problems, a speech impediment and anxiety.

She said: “He did make full admissions in interview as to the fact that he sent these messages but he couldn’t accept the logic behind that.

“He did plead guilty at the lower court and he does have desperate anxieties and problems with the neighbours.

She added: “He tends to only leave his house early in the morning or late at night to avoid having to deal with people.”

Judge Turner agreed with the assessment saying: “I did wonder how he would fare on a coach load of unpaid workers going off on a job somewhere.

“I am fairly anxious about that.”

Following the hearing today at Chelmsford Crown Court Judge Turner decided to spare Morris jail on the two counts in attempting to cause a child under 13 to engage in sexual conversations.

Morris was given concurrent six month jail terms for each offence, suspended for two years, 50 rehabilitation requirement days and 80 hours unpaid work.

An application for a Sexual Harm Prevention Order was also approved for seven years and will also be on the sex offenders notification register for seven years.

“Thankfully there was no real or live child involved,” said Judge Turner while sentencing.

“On the contrary you have been set up by people who have taken on the responsibility of being what they sometimes call online predator catchers.

“You were in contact with two adults who were taking it upon themselves the responsibility of trying to track and then trap people doing exactly what you were doing.

“I have had the advantage of seeing in a great deal of detail a lot about you and your background.

“That paints a picture of what is a rather sad and vulnerable person.”