[A] Carlisle man has been jailed for three counts of sexually assaulting a child.
David Stevenson, aged 53, of Compton Street, Carlisle, was sentenced today (21st July) at Carlisle Crown Court to life with a minimum of seven years.
Stevenson had committed his offences in 2014 and told the child that what he was doing was part of a game.
Stevenson, who denied all three charges of sexual assault and breaching a sexual offences prevention order (SOPO), was found guilty by a jury on Monday 12th June.
A woman, who cannot be identified for legal reasons, was jailed for 11 years for aiding and abetting the sexual assault of a child.
Detective Constable Lindsey Priestley, North Cumbria Public Protection Unit, said: “Firstly I would like to praise the victim in this case for showing great courage in talking to detectives. The risk to this child was identified by Children’s Services who deserve recognition for this.
“What the victim has gone through is one of the most harrowing cases I and my fellow investigator, DC Mark Singleton, have ever come across.
“Stevenson is a cruel predator who abused the victim and told them it was part of a game. Cumbria is a safer place for people like him being taken out of society.
“Throughout the investigation he has denied committing any offences which shows a total lack of remorse for his actions and the impact they have had on the victim.
“I would like to reiterate our commitment to investigating thoroughly any reports of sexual offence – whether recent or non-recent. I would urge anyone listening who has been subject to offences of this nature to come forward. You will be listened to.”
Isla Chilton for the CPS said: “David Stevenson preyed on a vulnerable young child who he manipulated into thinking that the abuse was part of an innocent game.
“We worked closely with the police from the outset to strengthen the evidence against Stevenson. We applied for bad character evidence to be presented to the jury during the trial which showed how Stevenson had a previous conviction for sexually abusing a teenage girl. When he abused the young victim in this case, he breached a Sexual Offences Prevention Order he had been given following that conviction eleven years ago.
“We also supported the victim in every way possible including organising an intermediary to assist during the trial to get the best possible evidence from them, which has resulted in Stevenson being brought to justice for these offences.”