Southampton man sentenced for sexual communication with a child
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A man has been sentenced to more than a year in prison after pleading guilty to sexual communication with a child.
Appearing at Southampton Crown Court yesterday (Thursday 31 August), Phillip Trevor Cornock, aged 34, previously of Denzil Avenue in Southampton, was sentenced for attempting to communicate with a child under 16 for sexual gratification.
The court heard that Cornock exchanged messages, often of a highly sexual nature, between August and October 2022 with a boy he believed to be 14-years-old. He had also made arrangements to meet with the child in Southampton – although in this instance the victim was not real.
Cornock was charged and appeared at Southampton Crown Court on Wednesday 2 August where he pleaded guilty to one count of attempting to communicate with a child under 16 for sexual gratification.
Appearing at the same court yesterday, Cornock was sentenced to 14 months in prison, as well as being placed on the sex offenders’ register and being subject to a Sexual Harm Prevention Order for a period of ten years.
Following the sentencing, a Hampshire & Isle of Wight Constabulary spokesperson said: “With young people having ready access to the internet and mobile phones, it is more important than ever that parents stay vigilant and educate their children about how to keep safe online.
“We want to continue to protect any vulnerable people, including young children, against possible sexual exploitation and I hope that this conviction shows the lengths that we will go to investigate any such claims.
“I also hope this sentence will alert others, as well as the parents of young children, to the dangers of the digital world and also encourage any victims of child sexual abuse to come forward and speak to us, no matter when it happened.
“It does not matter when it took place, or how old you are – you will be heard, you will be taken seriously and you will be supported in whatever decisions you wish to make.
“We take allegations of this nature extremely seriously and will always seek to bring those responsible for committing these offences to justice.
“We would encourage anyone who has been a victim of child sexual abuse to contact police on 101 where you can speak with our specialist officers in confidence.”
If you’re worried about a child’s behaviour, either in the real world or online, or even if you're unsure - you can speak to trained professionals who may be able to support you; as they might be at risk of child sexual exploitation.
Remind the child that even though people they’ve met online might feel like friends they may not be who they say they are. It is always worth considering reviewing what apps they are using and the parental controls and privacy settings on devices, mobile apps and social media networks that they may use too.
If you think a child is in immediate danger, call the police on 999.
The Lucy Faithfull Foundation is the only UK wide charity dedicated solely to preventing child sexual abuse. For anonymous support and advice, use the Stop It Now! helpline on 0808 1000 900 or visit https://www.stopitnow.org.uk/helpline/ to find out more.