Michael Strange for sexually abusing a child
11 Jan 2016 16:00 PM[View Full Size]
A man will today start a three year sentence behind bars for repeatedly abusing a young boy.
Michael Strange, 55, Sherburn Way, Wardley, Gateshead has been sentenced to three years after pleading guilty to 10 counts of sexual abuse against a 15 year-old boy.
The offences were committed between August 2003 and February 2004.
Officers from Northumbria's specialist Protecting Vulnerable People team questioned Strange after the victim reported the historic offences in October 2014.
He was later charged with four counts of indecent assault on child under 16, four counts of gross indecency of a child under 16 and two counts of inciting a child under 16 to commit an act of gross indecency. He pleaded guilty in November 2015 to all the offences and now begins his sentence behind bars.
Detective Constable Ian Moore supported the victim throughout the investigation and has praised him for his bravery in coming forward and reporting these crimes.
DC Moore said: "To live each day knowing that you have been abused in this way and feeling unable to tell anyone for so long really is a form of torture. To suffer this abuse in itself is heinous crime but to feel trapped is equally criminal. It is inhumane and can ruin your life.
"This man was anxious that he wouldn’t be believed. Thankfully he had the courage and confidence to come to police and report it, and because of this, Strange is behind bars where he belongs.
"While I'm sure the victim will never forget the horrendous ordeal Strange put him through as a child, I hope today's sentence helps him move on and feel a sense of justice being done.
"I would urge any victim of abuse to come forward - man, woman, young, old, whether recently abused or suffered abuse years ago - please come forward. If it happened once or you were repeatedly abused, we take every allegation seriously and it will be fully investigated. These sorts of offences are not, and nor have they ever been, acceptable behaviour and national media stories over the last few years should provide reassurance of that to any victims out there.
"We will believe you and we will do everything to ensure offenders are put before the courts."
The victim wishes to remain anonymous however, he has given the following statement.
"I continued to have sleepless nights as well as flashbacks about what Michael Strange did to me. While it is helpful to talk about it I have no doubt the mental scars left behind will never heal.
"When DC Moore phoned me and told me Michael Strange had pleased guilty to all charges against me, I felt relief of not having to go to trial but did not detract from the abuse he subject me to as a child.
"For years and years I had no one to talk to about the abuse, I was alone and isolated. I hope Strange is put bac in prison where he has no one to turn to, in the same way I didn't have anyone when he took my childhood and affected my life forever."