Ex-Kirkham Prison librarian accused of sex attacks on two inmates admitted having sex with a third prisoner

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Mother-of-two Sharon Mawdsley, 46, said she had intercourse with the prisoner just once on her last shift in the library at Kirkham open prison in Lancashire before she was dismissed in July 2018.

A prison librarian accused of sex attacks on two inmates admitted having sex with a third convict in the office of the prison library.

Mother-of-two Sharon Mawdsley, 46, said she had intercourse with the prisoner just once on her last shift in the library at Kirkham open prison in Lancashire before she was dismissed in July 2018.

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Mawdsley told Preston Crown Court that the two had met when the prisoner had visited the library where she was a part time assistant who sometimes worked alone in the evenings.

She agreed that she had given the prisoner a pair of her knickers "because he asked for them" on the day they had had sex.

The court has heard that the prisoner later "paraded " the underwear to around 20 inmates on the wing "like a trophy."

Mawdsley told her barrister Stephen Parkinson:" I found him attractive. We just started talking and flirting . It was stupid."

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Mawdsley, from Blackpool said that she couple had exchanged telephone numbers and had texted and Facetimed each other before having sex in the second office of the library.

Sharon Mawsdley was the librarian at Kirkham prison when she was accused of sexually assaulting two prisonersSharon Mawsdley was the librarian at Kirkham prison when she was accused of sexually assaulting two prisoners
Sharon Mawsdley was the librarian at Kirkham prison when she was accused of sexually assaulting two prisoners | LEP

She told the court that she and her husband, from whom she is now separated, were having marital and financial difficulties at the time.

Mr Parkinson asked: "Did you know it was illegal to be in possession of a mobile phone in prison?"

Mawdsley replied: "Yes, I did."

Mr Parkinson said: "There came a point when the relationship you struck up became sexual?"

Mawdsley said:" On one occasion, yes."

Mr Parkinson: "Did you have sex with him ?"

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She said:" I did, yes, once. It was on a Wednesday. It was my last shift in the library in the second office."

Mawdsley said that on another occasion there had been "kissing and cuddling" with the prisoner in the library when there were other inmates in the area.

Mawdsley, who started evidence in her own defence yesterday morning, admitted taking part in "sexualised" conversations with inmates when she was working in the library.

She told the jury: "It was just the men who talked like that. I realise now that I should not have done but I was attempting to fit in with the conversations. I thought we were just having a laugh."

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But she denied allegations by the two complainants that she had touched their private parts or had made remarks like "show us your penis."

She told the court: "I didn't touch any of them. The only person I touched was the prisoner (that she'd had sex with) and that was consensual."

Mawdsley said that she had felt "humiliated" when a story about her knickers being displayed appeared in a national newspaper in December 2018.

Former prison librarian Sharon Mawdsley is on trial at Preston Crown Court as she faces seven charges of sexual assaulting inmates at HMP KirkhamFormer prison librarian Sharon Mawdsley is on trial at Preston Crown Court as she faces seven charges of sexual assaulting inmates at HMP Kirkham
Former prison librarian Sharon Mawdsley is on trial at Preston Crown Court as she faces seven charges of sexual assaulting inmates at HMP Kirkham | SWNS

Prosecutor David Bentley asked Mawdsley in cross examination if she was a "Jekyll and Hyde" who changed her personality when she was alone with prisoners.

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She said:" I suppose a little bit. Sometimes I put on a brave face, a bit of bravado."

Mr Bentley asked:" As soon as you were alone, you changed . You used crude language which was highly explicit."

She replied: "On occasion but it was them who brought up the sexual conversation. But I certainly never said anything about swingers' parties or having lesbian sex in front of my husband. It was just general conversation."

Mawdsley denied that she felt "power" when she was the only woman in a room full of men or that she felt sexually aroused by that situation.

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Mawdsley had originally faced six charges of sexual assault but one charge was dropped yesterday.

One of the complainants admitted that he had misidentified the inmate whose trousers had allegedly been pulled down by Mawdsley.

The jury returned a verdict of not guilty on the direction of the trial judge Phillip Parry.

Mawdsley had pleaded guilty to one charge of misconduct in a public office at an earlier hearing.

The trial continues.