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Man jailed for sexual assault and theft involving Norwich prostitute

Published in The Norwich Evening News
27th September 2017


Norfolk
A 32-year-old man attacked a vice girl in Norwich before stealing her handbag, a court heard. Gavin Newton paid the 18 year-old £20 for sex after picking her up on Ber Street after a night out, but when she objected to his rough behaviour he sexually assaulted her before stealing her handbag and riding off on his bike, Norwich Crown Court was told.

Newton, of Canterbury Place, Norwich, had denied sexually assaulting the woman, but admitted theft of her handbag in December 2015. However a jury took about three hours to convict him of the sex offence, following a three-day trial.

Jailing him for three years and placing Newton on the sex offenders’ register for life, Judge Anthony Bate accepted Newton had been drinking in a nearby pub that evening, which had probably “emboldened him” to approach the victim for sex when he saw her on Ber Street. “However you became rough with her,” he said.

He said Newton grabbed the victim from behind and had sexually assaulted her and said the victim was entitled to the protection of the court.

Jude Durr, for Newton, said he was still a young man and was in some ways immature for his age. He said the offence was “out of character”. “It would not have occurred but for the fact he had been drinking that particular evening.” He said Newton had been hoping to rebuild his life but said: “None of that can happen now.”

During the trial Wayne Cleaver, prosecuting, told the jury that Newton thought the victim was “fair game” as she was working as a prostitute. He said that Newton had become annoyed when the prostitute had walked off after objecting to his behaviour and so he had sexually assaulted her and grabbed her handbag: “He stole it to add further insult to injury.”

He said the woman reported the incident to police and Newton was later arrested after his DNA was found on her ear. The court heard Newton at first denied he had ever used a prostitute but later admitted stealing her handbag in an attempt to get his £20 back.