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Man jailed for sending inappropriate messages to teenage girl

Icon of a judge and words saying jailed

A 41-year-old man has been found guilty of sending sexual messages to a child over a two-year period.

Steven Thomas, from Exeter, was sentenced at Bristol Crown Court on Thursday 5 October after being found guilty by a jury earlier in the year.

He was jailed for two years and four months after being convicted of causing/inciting a girl aged 13-15 to engage in sexual activity.

He will also be subject to a Sexual Harm Prevention Order (SHPO) and a notification requirement for 10 years.

The sentence relates to an investigation in which Thomas sent a large number of sexual messages and requests to a girl from Taunton over a two-year period.

During the sentencing, the judge commended the strength and resilience of Thomas’ victim throughout the investigation.

DS Louise Findlay, from Operation Bluestone, said: “The victim in this case has shown tremendous strength and courage in not only coming forward and reporting this, but also in continuing to support the investigation through trial while the defendant continued to deny his actions.

“I thank the officer in the case, PC Shannon Eyres, for her commitment to providing outstanding service and care to the victim.

“Avon and Somerset Police continues to commit to providing victims of rape and serious sexual offences with the care and support they require and remain driven in the pursuit of those committing these offences.”

Details of how to report incidents such as this to the police are available here: www.avonandsomerset.police.uk/report/rape-and-sexual-assault/