Sleepover paedophile, 43, given 'one more chance' after attacking girl, 15

Stephen Bates is facing sentence at Norwich Crown Court for running a man over in a van. PIC: Norwic

Oliver Sharp pleaded guilty to three sexual offences, including sexual activity with a child under the age of 16.  - Credit: Archant

A sex offender who attacked a 15-year-old girl at a sleepover after plying her with gin has been spared jail and given "one more go" at changing his life.

The victim, who cannot be named for legal reasons, was sleeping over at a house when she was sexually assaulted by Oliver Sharp, 43.

At Norwich Crown Court on January 7, 2021, Sharp pleaded guilty to three sexual offences, including sexual activity with a child under the age of 16. 

The man had picked up the two 15-year-old girls from Anglia Square on July 3, 2019 before driving them to his former home address in Gipsy Close, Norwich.

Norwich Crown Court heard how Sharp left the house at 9pm to buy a litre of gin for the teenagers.

In her victim impact statement, the girl said she "didn't want to drink too much" but Sharp "kept pouring drinks".

Once her friend fell asleep, Sharp began trying to kiss the 15-year-old, and sexually assaulted her.

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Phillip Far, prosecuting, said she had said "no" multiple times.

Once the girls went upstairs Sharp continued to call and text the victim multiple times, asking her to come downstairs.

Recorder Simon Taylor said: "Even once she did manage to escape your clutches by going upstairs you continued pestering her for sexual activity.

"She was so afraid of you that she said she kept slapping her friend to wake her up so that when you came upstairs her friend would be awake."

The next day the victim confided in her friend, who helped her tell her parents. Sharp was arrested and interviewed on July 7, 2019.

The defendant had already been convicted of a sexual offence against a child in 2005, which was "similar" to the new offences according to the prosecution.

Sharp was given a two-year prison sentence, suspended for two years by Recorder Taylor.

He told Sharp: "You supplied them with drink and deliberately in my estimation got them drunk which took context in them playing a game on their mobiles which involved sexualised questions.

"While they were answering those questions, you took part with commenting on their answers and feeding them alcohol laced with lemonade.

"Your victim experienced you assaulting her. She said no repeatedly but you ignored it, she tried to get out of the way on the sofa but space didn't really permit it."

Sharp was also ordered to take part in 60 sessions of the Horizon programme for sexual offenders, which aims to stop defendants from reoffending.

Sharp was also ordered to complete 200 hours of unpaid work, and take part in 30 days of rehabilitation.

He was given a sexual harm prevention order and will remain on the sex offender register for a further 10 years.

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