November 2019

Pervert sentenced for repeated abuse of young girl

A grandfather has been jailed for six years for the repeated sexual abuse of a very young girl in the 1990s.

Philip Holmes, now 72, was in his 40s when he abused the child at a property in Filey over a five-year period.

York Crown Court heard that the victim had since suffered a lifetime of deep psychological trauma.

Holmes appeared for sentence via video link on Monday after ultimately admitting six counts of indecent assault.

Prosecutor Paul Abrahams said the victim, who cannot be named for legal reasons, hid her dark secret for decades until finally coming forward to police in August last year.

He said that Holmes abused the pre-teen child after “grooming” her by offering to buy her treats such as sweets.

Holmes would also offer her money “such as 50p” if she took her clothes off and allowed him to touch her on intimate areas.

The numerous sexual assaults occurred over “several years”, added Mr Abrahams.

But the victim, now a mother, did not report the abuse for more than two decades because “despite thinking what was happening was wrong, she felt she had done wrong”.

She said the “enormity of the task was too much to even grasp” and described Holmes’s behaviour as “cruel, disgusting and predatory”.

She had since suffered from “constant” anxiety and had a breakdown, the consequences of which “I’m still bottling”.

Parenting had been a “torture” for her because of her own torrid childhood.

Defence barrister Paul Genny said that Holmes was going through his own “personal trauma” at the time.

“He said he simply wasn’t himself at the time,” added Mr Genny.

He said that Holmes – now of Leads Road, Hull – had since led a law-abiding life.

Jailing Holmes for six years, judge Sean Morris condemned the pensioner for “repeatedly sexually abusing a young child”.

Holmes was also placed on the sex-offenders’ register for life and made subject to a five-year sexual-harm prevention order.