A CONVICTED paedophile who flashed at an eight-year-old girl has been jailed for three years.
Raymond Casson exposed himself to the child as she played on her scooter outside her grandmother’s house in Buckland, Portsmouth.
The 46-year-old denied the offence and claimed he had been adjusting his uncomfortable underwear at the time.
But he was found guilty by a jury after a trial at Portsmouth Crown Court.
Judge Richard Price criticised Casson’s version of events.
He said: ‘The defence that you put before the jury was, bluntly, ridiculous.
‘When you gave your evidence you did so in a thoroughly arrogant and disdainful way.
‘If you had pleaded guilty that little girl would not have had to go through the ordeal of giving evidence.
‘You could and should have spared her that.’
Casson had flashed at the girl on a sunny day in July last year.
The youngster – who cannot be named for legal reasons – ran inside in a hysterical state to tell her family what had happened.
While her mum called the police the grandmother went to look for the culprit.
She then found Casson staring at children in a nearby play area.
Casson – who has previous convictions for possessing child pornography and sexual assaults on children – was the subject of a Sexual Offences Prevention Order at the time of the incident.
This order banned him from approaching children and going on the internet.
He was found guilty of exposure and breaching the order.
In jailing him, Judge Price praised the girl for her bravery during the trial.
‘The jury took a very short time to accept her evidence,’ he said.
‘That is entirely unsurprising. Not only was she a convincing witness but the description she gave of you was such a good description that her grandmother was able to follow you.’
Casson, of Arragon Court, Waterlooville, will be on the sex offenders’ register for life.
Elisabeth Bussey-Jones, defending, said that even after his conviction Casson still insisted he was innocent.
Detective Constable Andy Larder, of Portsmouth CID, welcomed the lengthy prison sentence handed down by the judge.
‘I’m pleased with the result and I know the family will be pleased as well,’ he said.
‘The girl was very brave during the trial and gave an exact and accurate account.
‘I would agree with the judge on Casson’s version of events.’