Seaton sex pest targeted schoolgirl outside Tesco

PUBLISHED: 19:00 02 November 2017

Exeter Crown Court. Picture by Alex Walton. Ref exeter crown court 2

Exeter Crown Court. Picture by Alex Walton. Ref exeter crown court 2

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Judge tells 47-year-old to clean up his act or face going to prison.

A drunken sex pest has been ordered to clean up his act or go to prison after he tried to chat up a 15-year-old girl outside a Seaton supermarket.

Shaun Harper, aged 47, was sat on a bench outside Tesco in Harbour Road, when he asked the schoolgirl if she wanted to have sex with him.

His drunken behaviour put him in breach of a Criminal Behaviour Order (CBO) which was made after a long series of incidents involving neighbours in Broadclyst and Sidford.

He has spent two months in prison after being arrested near the scene but was freed by Judge Geoffrey Mercer, QC, at Exeter Crown Court after promising to give up alcohol.

Harper, of Harbour Road, Seaton, admitted breach of a CBO after the prosecution dropped a more serious allegation of attempting to incite sexual activity with a child.

He was jailed for six months, suspended for a year, but told the CBO will remain in place and that he will go to prison if he breaches it again.

The judge told him: “Your behaviour that day, in drink, was deeply unpleasant and caused huge distress to other people and real concern. It has got to stop.

“You have been in prison for the best part of two months and could not complain if I sent you back there today. I am hoping I can trust you to fulfil the promise you have made in your letter to me to remain sober.”

Lee Bremridge, prosecuting, said Harper was drunk and sat on a bench outside Tesco when he started talking to the 15-year-old girl and then asked her to have sex with him. She refused and the police were called.

Mr Brian Fitzherbert, defending, said all Harper’s offending has resulted from his drink problem, which he is now motivated to address.

He had already had one three month spell of sobriety and worked with the addiction service Rise and Alcoholics Anonymous but had slipped back into alcohol abuse.”

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