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Pervert jailed for sexually assaulting woman who responded to Gumtree dog advert

15 Jun 2018 17:00 PM

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A pervert has been jailed for sexually assaulting a woman in his home - after she responded to a Gumtree advert for his pet dog.

Michael Scott, 41, has been sentenced to two years and eight months behind bars after being found guilty of sexually assaulting a 26-year-old woman last November.

The pair had met after his victim responded to a post on Gumtree in which he was advertising the sale of his Staffordshire bull terrier.

Scott arranged to meet the woman to see if she and the Staffy would be a good fit and the pair eventually returned to her home in Gateshead.

However, when the woman tried to get Scott to leave he refused, took her phone and stopped her from calling her family or friends.

A court heard how Scott then got into bed with his victim, who had learning difficulties, and then sexually assaulted her.

He eventually left the address after his perverted attack and took the victim's mobile phone with him so she could not call police.

The next day the 26-year-old victim disclosed to detectives what had happened and they arrested Scott on suspicion of sexual assault.

He later admitted two charges of sexual assault by touching and one charge of theft at Newcastle Crown Court.

Now Scott, of Gateshead, has been jailed for two years and eight months after appearing before the same court this afternoon (Friday). He was handed an additional three years on licence.

Investigating officer Detective Constable Rob Thorpe paid tribute to the victim for showing the bravery to bring the case to court.

He said: "The victim in this case was incredibly vulnerable and did not know what to do when Scott turned up at her home and forced himself inside.

"She felt scared and intimidated and was too scared to call for help. She tried to remove herself from the situation by going to her bedroom but Michael Scott had one thing in mind.

"I have no doubt that he went to that address with the intention of engaging in sexual activity regardless of whether the woman consented.

"He is a sick pervert who has previous convictions for sexual offences and he deserves to spend a significant amount of time behind bars.

"I know how difficult this whole process has been for his victim and I want to take this opportunity to praise her for the bravery she has shown since first reporting the abuse.

"Hopefully other victims of sexual assault are inspired by the courage she has shown and report their abuse to police."

In a statement read at Scott's sentencing hearing, his victim said the attack had left her terrified of living in her own home.

She said: "When Michael Scott was in my house I was terrified and scared. I didn't know who he was, he came out of nowhere.

"The only thing I wanted to do when he came to my house was to buy his dog, nothing else. When he took my phone off me I was worried that my family couldn't get in touch and I couldn't ring them.

"Since that day I have been getting down more and more. I feel like I wish I wasn't here sometimes.

"I used to have no issues and enjoyed living at my flat but since this happened I have been getting frightened at the slightest sound.

"It is bad, but really bad at night, as there is nobody around and it is pitch black. I am terrified letting my dog out in the garden.

"I wish I had never met Michael Scott. I would be terrified if he got out of prison or out on bail. I never want to see him again."

The dog was eventually re-homed with members of Scott's family following the case.