Barnoldswick ‘grinning’ flasher stalked teenage horse rider

Burnley Crown Court.
Burnley Crown Court.
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A “GRINNING” white van flasher who struck twice after stalking a terrified teenage horse rider on an isolated country lane, was spared jail.

Kitchen fitter John Horsman (49) blamed a low dose of prescribed anti-depressants for his aggressive, perverted and disturbing behaviour. He also claimed he had felt rejected and angry after his relationship broke down, a court was told.

Burnley Crown Court heard the father-of-three had repeatedly driven past the 17-year-old victim in Barnoldswick, on March 1st, and carried on even after she called her mother. On two occasions, the defendant, naked from the waist down, had risen out of his seat, thrust his hips above the steering wheel and held his genitals in his hand while just feet from the girl.

The sobbing victim was with her mother when Horsman appeared again and put his index finger to his lips, as if to say: “Be quiet.” His registration number had been taken and police traced him.

Horsman, of Airton, Skipton, admitted two counts of exposure. The defendant, who had no previous convictions, was given 36 weeks in prison, suspended for two years, with supervision and must attend the sex offender treatment programme. He was put on the sex offenders’ register for five years.

Horsman had admitted being in the area and seeing a girl on a horse, but did not own up to the offences.

Miss Silvia Dacre (prosecuting) said, after the incidents, the girl did not go out on her horse as much and was anxious when she did.

Mr Martin Hackett (defending) said, at the time, Horsman had been feeling angry, humiliated and rejected because of the breakdown of his relationship.

The judge said Horsman had targeted and stalked the victim and his behaviour had been persistent. She told him: “This is behaviour of grave concern. It must have been extraordinarily upsetting and frightening for her.”

She added, because of his age and every other aspect of his life, she was going to give him a chance.