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Man who sexually assaulted ex-partner with sex toy ‘thought he was being funny’, court told

The 29-year-old defendant avoided being put on the sex offenders’ register after his lawyer claimed it was a misguided attempt at humour

Belfast Magistrates Court. Pic: Peter Morrison

Alan ErwinBelfast Telegraph

A man who sexually assaulted his ex-partner with a sex toy has been sentenced to nine months’ probation.

The 29-year-old defendant avoided being put on the sex offenders’ register after his lawyer claimed it was a misguided attempt at humour.

He is not being named to protect the identity of the victim.

Belfast Magistrates’ Court heard the man went to her home in the city to collect his belongings on February 28 this year after their relationship ended.

Prosecutors said he asked where she had stored a vibrator and then retrieved it from a bedside drawer.

He switched the device on and placed it against the woman, who was said to be wearing pyjamas at the time, before putting it away and leaving the property.

The man subsequently pleaded guilty to a single count of sexual assault.

Defence counsel Michael Boyd acknowledged it was difficult to understand his thinking at the time.

“He thought he was being funny by waving this around,” the barrister said.

“He was actually being very inappropriate, unfunny and upsetting in the extreme to the injured party.”

Mr Boyd argued that it had been a one-off incident for which his client has expressed remorse.

“It wasn’t a sustained attack, it was over within seconds and he apologised to her by text message.”

Based on the circumstances of the offence and the defendant being assessed as posing a low risk, District Judge Alan White decided against putting him on the sex offenders’ register.

Mr White told him: “I consider this was a one-off example of poor behaviour by you which you thought was funny at the time.”

Imposing nine months’ probation, the judge warned him that he will be immediately placed on the register for any failure to comply with the order.


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