January 2019

Metheringham man jailed for eight years for ‘systematic’ sexual abuse of girl aged seven

A man who systematically sexually abused a young girl was today (Thursday) jailed for eight years at Lincoln Crown Court.

Keith Gray, 65, of Fen Road, Metheringham, who began abusing the girl when she was just seven years old, was told by Judge Simon Hirst that the sentence would have been longer but the law meant he was restricted by the maximum sentence in place at the time the offences were committed.

Gray, admitted eight charges of indecent assault committed between September 1983 and December 1987. In addition to being jailed he was placed on the sex offenders’ register for life.

The judge, passing sentence, said: “It is clear your victim has been profoundly affected by your abuse of her which was carried out for no other reason than for you to gain sexual gratification for yourself.

“The offences for which I have to sentence you took place many years ago when the the maximum sentence was considerably lower than is now available and at a time when the sentencing climate was less than it is now.

“I must sentence you in accordance with the sentencing regime applicable today not at the time of the offences.

“I am constrained by the maximum sentence at the time. If not the sentence would be higher.” Mark Watson, prosecuting, told the court

“The victim was systematically abused by this defendant when she was a child. It started when she was aged about seven.”

Mr Watson said that Gray repeatedly touched the girl over a three year period. He also forced her to perform a sex act on him on a number of occasions.

The offences first came to light when the victim revealed what had happened to her mother and her sister.

The victim, who is now in her 40s, received counselling and in April last year made a complaint to police about what happened.

Mr Watson said: “The defendant was arrested. He gave limited admissions saying that on one occasion he asked her to touch him but he otherwise denied the rest of his behaviour.”