'˜My life has been destroyed by my mother' says sex abuse victim

THE abuse committed by his mother has affected Andrew Stevens' life for more than 30 years after it took place.

Monday, 23rd January 2017, 1:11 pm
Updated Monday, 23rd January 2017, 1:13 pm
Andy Stevens

Speaking yesterday after justice finally caught up with Linda Denham-Larholt, Mr Stevens said he was distraught his mum had not been jailed.

He said: ‘It feels like she’s got a slap on the wrist and I got a slap in the face. My life has been destroyed by her.’

Mr Stevens had left the family home in Second Avenue, Southbourne, aged 16 to flee his mother and live in Portsmouth.

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Linda Denham-Larholt outside court

The memory of the abuse only came to him years later in his 20s when he saw his estranged mother at her home. He has become introverted and lost his confidence.

He said: ‘It was absolutely horrific, I left her house in anger but still adored my mother.

‘I had gone from having an adoring mother to being abused by my adoring mother.

‘I find it hard to deal with, the older I’ve got the worse it’s got.’

Linda Denham-Larholt outside court

Tragically, Andy questions whether he is responsible for what happened.

Investigating officer Detective Constable Elaine Keating said the case was complex.

She said: ‘This case shows that we will always take reports of sexual offences seriously, no matter how long ago they said to have happened, and will investigate where possible to seek justice for the victims.’