April 2020

Plymouth bricklayer jailed for 12 years for sexually abusing girls

A perverted bricklayer has been jailed for 12 years for sexually abusing two girls almost a decade apart.

Tim Martin, aged 47, drove both his victims to self-harm, Plymouth Crown Court heard.

He plied the second girl with vodka and cocaine so he could take advantage, a jury found in January.

Judge James Townsend, in a hearing held over Skype because of the coronavirus lockdown, ruled that Martin posed a danger to girls.

He said: “I wish to pay tribute to the two victims for their courage in speaking about what happened and for giving evidence before this court.

“No doubt they feared that they would not be believed, but they were believed. I can only hope that will given them a sense that justice has been achieved.

“They have also demonstrated offences against young people which will protect potential victims in the future.”

Judge Townsend passed an extended sentence with a 12-year jail term. Martin will not be freed at the normal half-way stage, but will only be considered for parole after eight years.

He will only then be released if it is considered safe.

The judge was sitting at Swindon Crown Court with barristers and the defendant appearing over Skype in a bid to deal with a backlog of cases caused by the pandemic.

Martin, of Lansdowne Road, Crownhill, spent four days on trial after denying six offences in January.

He pleaded not guilty to three serious sexual offences against a girl in 2007 and 2008. The counts cover multiple incidents of indecent touching.

Martin also denied three counts of sexual activity with a child – two involving penetration – on the night of August 11 to August 12, 2017.

He told the jury that the sexual acts never happened.

But the jury found him guilty on all six counts – five unanimously and one by an 11 to one majority.

Martin drunkenly abused the first girl after visiting a city social club.

He then plied the second victim, who is in her teens, with vodka and cocaine.

Martin separated her from her friends and then took advantage of her sexually while she was intoxicated.

He claimed that he only gave the girl cider or WKD and said he did not give her the drug or take it himself.

Judge Townsend imposed a lifetime Sexual Harm Prevention Order to limit Martin’s contact with girls in the future.

Martin must also sign the Sex Offender Register for the same period.