A man has been handed a 15-year jail term at Bristol Crown Court after admitting six counts of indecently assaulting a child over a three-year period in the 1990s.
Kevin Mottram, 68, of Peasedown St John, had admitted abusing the girl while she was between the ages of six and nine. His early guilty plea was taken into account during sentencing.
The non-recent offences were reported in March 2020 by the victim, now an adult.
Today, Tuesday 28 September, His Honour Judge Picton ordered that Mottram should serve half his sentence before being considered for release, when he would have an extended licence period of three years.
The judge also imposed an unlimited restraining order and an indefinite Sexual Harm Prevention Order. Mottram will remain a registered sex offender indefinitely.
Sentencing, HHJ Picton said the offences were a "terrible thing" and an abuse of trust, adding that they resonated throughout her life and describing her as "very brave".
In a personal statement read to the court, the woman described the impact of the offences which changed her life forever from the age of six.
Her initial attempts to tell someone were not believed and she said: "Because of this … almost all of my childhood memories are tainted by him and what he did to me.
"The impact of what he did continues to rob positivity and joy from my life, even in times … that should be the most joyful and bring such happiness."
Having her own children led to flashbacks and provided the turning point for her disclosure.
She said: "This sentence will never be able to undo everything I’ve so sadly had to experience but I hope that it will keep the defendant from committing any such awful offences again. Nobody else deserves to suffer pain and distress like I suffered and nobody else deserves to have their innocence so wrongly taken from them.
"I hope that by sharing and reliving this pain, I may be able to live a life where I can introduce normality again, where I don’t have to live in fear … where I can enjoy time with my young family, knowing that he has been served the strict justice that he truly deserves. I will never forget what happened, but hopefully a strict sentence will enable not just me but my family as a whole to live a life free of ongoing fear and anxiety."
DC Charlotte Roberts, the officer in the case, said after the hearing: "The victim in this case has been courageous, and dignified and has shown immense strength to come forward to report these non-recent offences.
"She was clearly able to articulate the long term affect that this offending had on both her and her family. This much has been clear throughout and I hope that the sentence will show how robustly it has been dealt with.
"I hope that this sentence gives her some closure to these events and allows her to move forward."
If you have been a victim of sexual assault, whether recent or non-recent, please report it to Avon and Somerset Police. You will be supported by a team of dedicated investigators and given access to specialist support.
If you are not ready to speak to the police you can contact The Bridge sexual assault referral centre on: 0117 342 699 or visit their website: http://www.thebridgecanhelp.org.uk/ for free and confidential advice.