October 2018

Girl, 11, helped snare ‘exceptionally dangerous’ sex attacker with ‘one of the best’ E-fit images ever

A brave 11-year-old girl has been praised after her description of a serial sex attacker helped police create an incredibly accurate  E-fit image.

Isaac Watson, 24, carried out a series of sex attacks in Eastbourne, East Sussex, on five women aged between 11 and 32 over a five-year period.

His youngest victim gave a description of him and helped police compile a picture of him that was so good that several people contacted detectives with his name.

A court heard that he chose his victims carefully, avoiding areas where there might be witnesses or CCTV.

He would then run up to them from behind, catching his victims unawares, and sexually assault them under their clothing. He then ran off, leaving his victims shocked and upset.

In some cases he hid his face so that his victims would not be able to identify him, but the 11-year-old girl was able to get a good look at him.

Detective Constable Dan Thomson said: ‘When we issued an E-fit of the suspect to the media and public several names were put forward, including Watson. ‘The E-fit had been completed with the assistance of an 11-year-old girl who was a witness to the September 2017 offence and the resemblance between the E-fit and Watson is one of the best I have seen.

‘This is a testament to the memory and descriptive ability of this very young witness. ‘Watson might not have been identified as the offender without this young girl’s evidence, or another report from a member of the public who saw the Efit in the media and contacted us to give us his name.

‘She also told us that at the time the E-fit was published, Watson had cut his hair, which increased our suspicions of him.’

His DNA matched that found on five victims and he was charged with multiple sexual assaults.

He has now admitted five sex attacks but denied four others that have been left to lie on file. Watson has been jailed for eight years and will register as a sex offender for life.