Pervert took upskirt images of schoolgirls, court hears

Posted On 05 Oct 2020 at 3:54 pm

A pervert who followed schoolgirls around Brighton and Hove to take “upskirt” films has been spared jail.

Christopher Barclay, 40, was caught after two of the girls he had tried to take pictures of him called the police after they saw him again at Hove Station.

When police searched his home, they found several pictures and films of him following young teenage girls in school uniform around Brighton and Hove as well as a large stash of child pornography.

Today at Lewes Crown Court, Judge Jeremy Gold sentenced him to 18 months, suspended for two years.

He said: “It’s desperately upsetting and desperately frightening for young girls having people like you trying to film up their skirts.

“As if that wasn’t bad enough, there’s then child pornography on your computer which is why you are here before me in the crown court in serious trouble.”

However, Judge Gold said although he was “on the cusp” of being sent to prison, he thought a suspended sentence had a better chance of preventing Barclay offending again.

He was also ordered to carry out 30 rehabilitation days, put on the sex offenders register and banned from owning a mobile phone unless it is approved by a probation officer.

He was ordered to pay the two schoolgirls £200 each.

Prosecuting, Gabby Henty said Barclay had first been spotted by a 15-year-old schoolgirl who was stood next to him at a bus stop in July 2017.

She said: “She noticed the defendant standing close to her holding a Go Pro camera. She felt as if he was invading her personal space.

“A day or two later she saw him again, and again he kept moving closer to her.”

She pointed him out to her friend, who was 16. A short time later, the friend also found him next to her.

Ms Henty said: “He had a black bag on the floor next to her. She saw him again at Churchill Square and that time he stood very close to her.

“He was holding a small black bag by its strap and it was on the ground. She looked down and saw a camera lens poking out of the bag.”

On 21 July, 2017, the pair spotted him at Hove Train Station and a friend of theirs took a picture of him. The police were called but he could not be found that day.

However, on 11 September, he was seen again, the police were called and he was arrested and his home searched.

Barclay, of May Road, Brighton, pleaded guilty on 8 September to four charges of taking indecent pictures and another four of possessing indecent films and videos.

He was accused of trying to take an indecent picture of a schoolgirl four times, three in July 2017 and then again in September 2017.

He was also charged with four counts of having indecent images, two category A films of children (the most harmful), 16 category B films of children and 865 pictures and 72 films of category C.

  1. imogen Makepeace Reply

    “he thought a suspended sentence had a better chance of preventing Barclay offending again.” How exactly?

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