Man sentenced for sexual assault incidents in Andover
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A man has been sentenced to two years in prison for sexually assaulting four people in Andover last month.
James Michael Ford, 33, of Dines Close in Andover, appeared before Winchester Crown Court yesterday (Thursday 27 July) for sentencing.
He also received a seven year restraining order for each of the victims and his Sexual Harm Prevention order amended to include further restrictions.
He pleaded guilty to two counts of sexual assault, two counts of indecent exposure, and breaching a Sexual Harm Prevention Order at Basingstoke Magistrates Court on 26 June.
At around 1pm on 23 June, a 29-year-old woman was on Anton Lane when Ford cycled past her. He then dismounted from his bicycle and pulled down his trousers before putting his hand in his pants and touching himself inappropriately in front of her.
A short while later, Ford cycled past a 17-year-old girl and sexually assaulted her. This was at the junction of Colonzo Drive and Vigo Road.
Officers then received a report at around 2.45pm that a 23-year-old woman saw a man masturbating in some bushes on Picket Twenty.
Ford also assaulted a 14-year-old girl on the same day. At around 4pm the victim was walking on Anton Lane Path when Ford cycled past her and sexually assaulted her.
Following police enquiries, Ford was arrested at his home address on 24 June. Whilst at his address, officers seized a bicycle matching the description given by the victims.
Detective Sergeant Mike Jarvis said: “Ford’s behaviour towards these women is very worrying and I am glad that he has been held accountable for his actions.
“I hope this result sends a clear message that we take these reports very seriously and will investigate thoroughly. I am pleased that we have secured justice for these victims. Reducing violence against women and girls remains one of our top priorities and together with other agencies we do a lot of work to tackle this issue.
“I would like to take this opportunity to remind people that if you have been the victim of a sexual offence, please report it to us – you will be listened to and you will be taken seriously. We will also work to get you the support that you need.” If you have been affected by sexual assault you can contact police on 101 and speak to a police officer in confidence.
We recognise that not everyone has the confidence to speak to police, but there are support services available that can help you if you are a victim of abuse.