Clacton: Specialist detectives secure justice for sexual abuse victims
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Specialist detectives have secured justice for two victims after the man who abused them was convicted of a string of sexual offences.
Simon Chilton abused two children between 2013 and 2018.
The 36 year-old, formerly of Glover Close, Clacton, was arrested after details of the offences came to light in November 2018.
Specialist detectives from our child abuse investigation team supported the victims and worked with them to get their account of what happened.
Through this sensitive work, officers were able to identify more than a dozen offences for which they sought charges for.
In September 2019 he was charged with eight counts of rape, four counts of sexual assault, four counts of sexual assault by penetration, two counts of sexual assault, and one count of assault by beating.
Chilton denied all the charges but following a trial at Chelmsford Crown Court was found guilty today (Wednesday 5 May) of seven counts of rape, four counts of sexual assault by penetration, two counts of sexual assault, and one count of assault by beating.
He was found not guilty of one count of rape.
He is due to be sentenced at the same court on Friday 14 May.
The case was one of the first where we used new powers to better support victims by allowing the evidence of vulnerable victims or witnesses to be pre-recorded at an early stage, before a trial.
This means their recollection of what happened is fresher and they don’t then have to go through the ordeal of giving evidence at an actual trial.
Investigating officer Detective Constable Nicola Blackburn said:
“Simon Chilton is a dangerous and prolific abuser who subjected these two children to an unimaginable ordeal spanning years.
“Not only this, but he forced them to re-live their ordeal through a trial.
“No-one should experience what Chilton put his victims through, let alone children.
“His vile actions now mean he is likely to spend a significant amount of time behind bars.
“I want to praise the courage of his victims. It has taken incredible courage to come forward and report Chilton’s abuse and I am glad we have been able to bring him to justice
“When someone reports abuse to us they are supported by specially trained officers and staff and they can be confident their cases will be investigated by dedicated detectives.”
The new measures used in this case, known as Section 28 of the Youth Justice and Criminal Evidence Act 1999, was launched in Essex in August 2020.
Detective Superintendent Neil Pudney, from our Crime and Public Protection Command, said:
“The use of this new measure will have real benefits for victims of crime.
“It improves the quality of evidence we can put forward to a trial but, more importantly, means a vulnerable victim does not have to go through the ordeal of giving evidence in a court room.
“Better quality evidence increases the chance of a conviction, and therefore justice for the victim.
“And giving evidence at an actual trial can be a stressful and intimidating prospect, especially for vulnerable victims or witnesses so having this measure in place which means their evidence can be heard without them having to stand up in court means we can better support victims.”