April 2010

Teen admits sending girls sex messages

A YEOVIL teenager who sent sexually explicit messages to two young girls has appeared in court.

Lee Campbell Houston, 18, asked one for topless photographs and then exposed himself to another on a live webcam, South Somerset Magistrates heard.

One of the victims confided in her school matron only after Houston asked her to send an even more explicit photograph.

Houston, of Murray-Smith Drive, Houndstone, pleaded guilty to causing or inciting a girl to engage in sexual activity and to answer sexually explicit text messages between June 30 2009 and September 1, 2009.

He also admitted intentionally causing or inciting a girl under the age of 13 to engage in non-penetrative sexual activity by exposing himself and asking her to remove her clothing on dates in 2008 and 2009.

The Yeovil court was told that during the early part of 2009 Houston, then 17, and a 13-year-old girl started texting each other, the content of which soon became graphic and of a sexual nature.

Prosecutor Tim Rutherford said: “The girl told the defendant she was 13 and he stopped, but it then started again midway through the year. The messages soon became sexual but she replied to him and there was regular contact.

“Then in late September when Houston was 18 he requested topless photographs from the girl.

“She sent a number of pictures – two of which were topless. He then requested a more explicit picture. The girl then spoke to her school matron and the police were contacted.”

Houston said he thought she was 16 or 17 but had no intention of meeting with her.

Mr Rutherford said two other females, aged 12 and 13, were also in contact with Houston. The younger girl received a number of messages which were also of a sexual nature.

“In late 2008 the two girls were at the younger one’s home using a webcam when Houston showed his erect penis which was viewed by both of them,” he said.

“When the defendant was questioned about this incident he admitted having a conversation on thewebcam but could not remember what was said and could not remember if he exposed himself, but may well have done.”

Defending, Helena Suffield said: “They were the actions of a silly young man and unfortunately technology allows for this sort of thing to happen.

“He fully appreciates the seriousness of these offences but his life has moved on and he is now working.

“He still maintains he did not know the girls were as young as they were but this is the danger of the technology open to these young people in the modern world.

“The girls were quite happily texting and messaging him back and it was only when the last picture was requested that someone else was told.”