Man who showed sexual image to child had ‘no bad intent

A 32-YEAR-OLD Fermanagh man has been placed under a three year Probation Order after admitting sexual communication with a child and showing her sexual images.
James Thomas Ace Warren, 32, from Castlebalfour Drive, Lisnaskea initially denied committing the offences on March 16, 2020, but later changed his plea.
Dungannon Crown Court heard the child was staying overnight with Warren and his girlfriend, who left for work the following day.
While alone with Warren, he began asking the child random questions such as had she smoked weed or ever ‘shifted’ with a boy, meaning kissing.
He also asked what she looked for in a boy and if she’d lost her virginity.
Warren proceeded to tell the child when he lost his virginity and how he, “Missed the single life.”
Despite the conversation making the child uncomfortable, Warren showed her two videos, one of male genitalia and another of a female exposing her breasts.
The child later disclosed what occurred and Warren was arrested, essentially making no comment replies to all questions during police interview.
‘no bad intent’
He did, however, at one point state, “I don’t know what to say as I’ve been advised to say nothing. But I want to say there was nothing bad in my head. There was no bad intent.”
Prosecution counsel pointed out an aggravating factor was, “The considerable disparity in age” between Warren and the child.
There is also a previous relevant record for voyeurism which occurred prior to the current matter and subsequently dealt with at Enniskillen Magistrates Court by imposition of a Probation Order and sex offender registration.
Defence counsel stressed, “Much more serious contact offences were not applicable in this case …which falls into the lowest brackets of both harm and culpability.”
The images, he added, “Were not benign. They were sexual, but at the lowest rung.”
Referring to the content of a pre-sentence report, Judge Brian Sherrard QC told Warren, “You still struggle to some extent to recognise the full inappropriateness of your actions …The totality of your offending has placed your family life in jeopardy as well as impacting on your own health and wellbeing.”
Described as presenting a medium risk of reoffending, with a moderate need for supervision, Judge Sherrard held the facts of the matter to be at the lower end of the scale.
“Your behaviour appears to be borne out of immaturity and lack of consequential thinking and insightfulness. The priority of the court is to seek rehabilitation and ensure our community is protected.”
Warren was sentenced to a three year Probation Order and will remain on the sex-offender register for five years.
A Sexual Offences Prevention Order was not deemed necessary.

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