Detective urges abuse victims to come forward even if offences happened decades ago

A CAMBS detective today called for victims of abuse to come forward – even if the offences happened decades ago.

The plea was made by Det Con Stu Taylor of the force’s child’s abuse investigation unit and followed the jailing of a 73 year-old at Peterborough Crown Court.

Neville Baxter was of West Street, Helpston near Peterborough, was today jailed for 18 months after pleading guilty to sexual assaults on a boy more than 35 years ago.

Baxter carried out the assaults between 1972 and 1975 at an address in Newborough, near Peterborough, when the victim was aged between seven and 10.

The court heard the offences had gone unreported at the time and it had taken the victim 25 years before summoning the courage to tell his family.

It was then not until December last year that he felt able to speak to police and allow a prosecution to take place.

Baxter was told today he would be placed on the sex offenders’ register for 10 years and given a sexual offences prevention order (SOPO) for an indefinite period which prohibits him from having any unsupervised contact with anyone under 16.

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DC Taylor said afterwards: “This case proves that justice can and should be done, even if a crime took place several decades ago, and I would like to praise the victim for having the bravery to come forward.

“The sentence given today shows how seriously this type of crime is regarded by the courts and I hope other victims of sexual offences, no matter how long ago they took place, are encouraged to come forward as a result.”

Baxter pleaded guilty to four counts of indecent assault and two counts of indecency with a child.

In police interview Baxter said he had been sexually abused as a child in the late 1930s. He and his family moved to Peterborough in the 1940s.

The court heard he was married but had no children at the time the abuse took place. He would take the victim out in his car but then stop and sexually assault him.

Baxter admitted carrying out the assaults for sexual gratification but said he knew it was wrong and felt guilt over his actions.