Gordon Wateridge, nicknamed, “The Perv” by his victims, was sentenced to two years in jail today for repeatedly sexually assaulting children at Haut de la Garenne.
Described as a ''persistent sexual bully'' during his trial, Wateridge was found guilty of eight charges of indecent assault against young girls and one charge of assault against a young boy in court last month.
Judge Christopher Pitchers said, "What he did was rightly described in the trial as sexual bullying," adding that the acts carried out by Wateridge against the girls were at the "lower end" of the sentencing guidelines, but he also noted "There is no such thing as a trivial indecent assault of child."
Crown Advocate Stephen Baker claimed, "The offences were committed against the victims sometimes took place in the presence of other children so as to cause particular humiliation."
Defense Advocate Michael Preston argued for a "merciful" sentence because he claims Wateridge is "being held up as a scapegoat".
He said the offences came to light in the midst of the media frenzy surrounding the "discredited" police investigation into events at Haut de la Garenne.
Wateridge sentence is 21 months for each of the eight indecent assault charges, to run concurrently, and for three months, consecutively, for the assault on the boy.
Wateridge also pleaded guilty to possession of two unlicensed air pistols, a silencer, and 48 rounds of ammunition that were found by police during a raid on his home.
Wateridge was not sentenced on the weapons charges.
So, there you have it! Wateridge was found guilty at trial - the man AG Bailhache said he didn’t want charged and thanks to Lenny Harper was ultimately charged.
Did you note while in court, Advocate Preston referred to the “discredited” police investigation of Haut de la Garenne? Hmmm...charged, convicted, sentenced?
Is this justice? Or is this the sacrificial lamb being offered up? Are some saying, “glad that’s over with, now we can go back to things as usual in Jersey”? – I’m leaning toward the latter.