An 18-year-old man has escaped jail for grooming and then raping a 12-year-old girl in Rotherham.
Charlie Flinders appeared before Sheffield Crown Court today (Tuesday 13 February) where he was sentenced to two years in prison, suspended for two years. He had admitted the rape at a court hearing in December.
Flinders raped his victim, who cannot be named for legal reasons, when he was 16 years old. Evidence of his sexual contact with his victim via text messages were revealed during the police investigation.
Detective Sergeant Gareth Gent said: “Flinders sent sexually inappropriate messages to a child, knowing she was underage and that his actions were against the law.
“Our enquiries uncovered evidence of Flinders being in sexual communication with his victim around the time of the crime.
“This culminated in the rape of a child and this sentencing means he will now receive the appropriate monitoring and rehabilitation. Should he re-offend, he faces going to prison.
“His criminal behaviour has undoubtedly contributed to the impact on his victim’s life.
“Child sexual abuse can have a devastating effect on its victims and I hope that this young girl is now able to move forwards in her recovery with the knowledge that her abuser has been brought to justice.
“If anyone out there is suffering sexual abuse or exploitation, or if you have concerns for a child, please contact police. We have dedicated officers and agencies who are here to listen, support victims and their families, and prosecute offenders of this awful crime.”
Anyone who wishes to report concerns for a child can call police on 101, or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111. You can also call or text the national child sexual exploitation helpline Say Something on 116 000.