Special PCs quit posts after sex assault

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Two Lancashire Police special constables have been given suspended jail terms after they were convicted of a “disgusting and outrageous” sexual assault near a Preston nightclub.

Karim Al Tikriti, 22, of Tulketh Road, Ashton, Preston, and Jonathan Kelly, 21, from Whitworth Road, Rochdale, had both been accepted into jobs as PCSOs with the force and had ambitions to become full police officers.

But their careers today lie in tatters after a Crown Court judge sentenced them over the “humiliating” assault on a drunken student close to Squires nightclub, in Market Place, Preston.

Liverpool Crown Court heard the pair were out drinking in the early hours of March 27 this year when they were refused admission into Squires for being too drunk.

They hung around the club, hoping to be let in later, when a clearly drunk 21-year-old student was ejected from inside.

She eventually collapsed in nearby Lowthian Street and was helped to her feet by the two defendants but then went to lean against a wall.

The court heard that the landlady of the nearby Market Tavern, Kirsty Hodgeon, who could see Lowthian Street from her bedroom, became “extremely concerned” at lewd comments made by the defendants to the victim.

The court heard Al Tikriti moved behind the “unresponsive” victim and began to simulate intercourse.

The victim then fell to the floor again and Kelly then exposed himself to her while Al Tikriti filmed it on his mobile phone.

The incident only ended when the Market Tavern landlady opened her window and shouted for the pair to leave.

Kelly pleaded guilty to sexual assault in October, the day before his trial was due to start. Al Tikriti was found guilty by a jury after a three-day trial.

Judge Dennis Watson QC, sentencing at Liverpool, said: “Both of you could see she was so drunk that she had no real idea of what was going on. She was unaware of what she or anyone else was doing.

“Indeed, she had no memory at all of the events which followed.

“But the fact that she was unconscious through drink meant that she was extremely vulnerable.

“However, rather than help – as would be hoped for, particularly in the case of off-duty special constables – you both decided to humiliate her by behaving in a disgusting and outrageous way.”

He added: “Although neither of you was on duty that night as a special constable, the fact that both of you are intelligent young men and that you held that office means that you, of all people, should have acted to protect this young woman rather than degrade her.

“Neither of you is fit to wear a police uniform of any sort.”

He said both men were immature and had thrown away their good character and the chance to pursue their chosen career.

He added: “Your joint intention was to humiliate this vulnerable young women sexually. Your behaviour was nothing short of grotesque.”

The court heard both men had numerous good character references and were unlikely to ever offend again.

Both were jailed for 12 months suspended for 18 months and must observe a three-month curfew and carry out 150 hours of unpaid work.

They have also been made subject to notification requirements for sex offenders for 10 years.

The victim, who cannot be identified for legal reasons, did not want to speak about her ordeal today.