Portchester pensioner jailed for sex assault on five-year-old girl

Bob Higgins at an earlier court hearing  Picture Habibur Rahman/Solent News

Trial date for ex-Southampton football coach accused of abuse

0
Have your say

A PAEDOPHILE pensioner found guilty of repeatedly abusing a young girl has been locked up for two-and-a-half years.

At the end of a trial last month, Christopher Barrable was found guilty of molesting the girl, then aged five and six, a number of times in 2009 and 2010.

Barrable, who lived in Portchester at the time of the offences, showed little emotion as he was sentenced at Portsmouth Crown Court for multiple counts of sexual assault on an under-13.

During the trial, the jury was shown a DVD of an interview with the girl, who cannot be identified for legal reasons.

In it she said: ‘He was being bad.’ She added: ‘I feel angry about what he has done.

‘Grown-ups shouldn’t do it because it’s quite bad.’

She told how the 68-year-old had repeatedly touched her by putting his hand beneath her underwear.

Barrable admitted he had touched the girl but denied it had been in a sexual way.

The allegations came to light when the girl told her parents.

Adrienne Knight, defending, told the court that Barrable had previously been of good character and had no previous convictions.

She said that before the allegations he had been a bridge teacher who was often employed to work on cruise ships. She said: ‘He’s lost his home, he lost all his bridge contracts, he could no longer go on the cruises.

‘His former friends have disowned him and he’s had to move away.’

Barrable, of Sweetwater Close, in Guildford, Surrey, sat impassively throughout the hearing.

His partner, who is standing by him, sat in the public gallery.

Jailing him Judge Roger Hetherington said: ‘The touching was done despite repeated attempts by her, young as she was, to try to get you to stop.

‘When she was only five or six, over quite a protracted period, you put your hand under her clothing and moved it around. I accept this whole business has had a devastating effect on your life and your social life.

‘It’s fortunate for you that you have the support of a new partner, but this type of offence must be visited by a custodial sentence.’

Barrable had already been put on the sex offenders’ register after the trial.