'Monster' jailed after abuse victim tells judge of his torment

Exeter Crown Court

Exeter Crown Court. - Credit: Archant

A judge has praised the bravery of a child abuse victim who stood up in court to reveal how his childhood was stolen by a ‘monster’. 

Keith Taylor subjected the child to a series of sexual assaults when he was aged five to eight but the boy only summoned the courage to go to the police 25 years later. 

The victim, now in his 30s, stood in the witness box at Exeter Crown Court to read a harrowing victim impact statement which told how the abuse left him distrustful of any contact with adults for the rest of his childhood, including his own mother. 

He said: “It is hard to put into words 20 odd years of torment. Keith stole my innocence and my chance to be a child. I questioned every contact with adults and their motivation. 

“This is to you, Keith. You made me question who I was as a person and to question my sexuality. I was a child. I should have been out playing football with no cares in the world. 

“You were able to carry on with your life while mine stopped. Even as an early adult I had a huge chip on my shoulder. You were entrusted by my mother but you abused that trust and you abused an innocent child. 

“I don’t know if you abused me for gratification or for some twisted idea of gaining power. You stole from me the healthy and safe childhood I should have had and I’ll never get that back. 

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“You did the unthinkable to me. I can only describe you as a monster who has shown no remorse.” 

Taylor abused the boy after he and his wife offered to look after him and his brother at their home in Barnstaple when his mother was working nights. 

He disguised some of the sexual assaults as massages but also climbed into bed naked with the bewildered child and simulated sex. 

The victim buried his memories for almost three decades but went to the police after walking past Taylor’s home with his mother, who pointed it out and asked if he remembered going there. 

Taylor, aged 58, now of Glendale Terrace, Bideford, admitted five counts of indecent assault and was jailed for five years and four months by Recorder Mr Simon Levene. 

He told him: “You got away with it for many, many years. You destroyed the confidence which any young person needs when they are growing up.” 

“I am very grateful to the victim for coming along today and having the courage to read his statement.” 

Mr Richard Crabb, prosecuting, said the offences happened in the mid 1990s when the boy was aged five to eight and he and his brother were sent to stay with Taylor overnight. 

The abuse was only reported in 2019 and Taylor admitted it when the case came to court. 

He has convictions for offences against boys both before and after these ones. He indecently assaulted a ten-year-old in 1979 and was jailed for sexual assaults on two 11-year-olds in 2005. 

Mr Lee Bremridge, defending, said Taylor had pleaded guilty at the earliest opportunity and expressed genuine remorse. He suffers from ill health which will make his time in prison particularly arduous. 

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