Published: 09:50, 28 July 2014
A man caught performing a sex act in the children’s section of a town centre department store has walked away with a fine.
Marian Ghita, 25, from Grove Road, Maidstone, will have to pay £270 after pleading guilty to outraging public decency while at House of Fraser, Fremlin Walk.
Maidstone Magistrates’ Court heard Ghita was seen on CCTV visiting various areas of the store before entering the children’s section where he was caught performing the sexual act.
The incident happened on Friday, June 20, just before 11am.
Ghita, who works assembling pallets for a company in Lenham, told the court via his solicitor that he felt suicidal and embarrassed by what had happened.
Defending, Mrs Hart, added that he had gone to the shop with the intention of buying presents for relatives in Romania in preparation for a holiday, but had become aroused when he spotted a female member of staff.
Fremlin Walk security was alerted to Ghita’s behaviour and attended the scene accompanied by police officers to find him still engaged in the act, the court heard.
No members of the public witnessed the incident as the store was quiet at the time.
Mrs Hart said that the fact he had been in the children’s section at the time of the offence was purely circumstantial and that his actions had been triggered only by the female shop assistant.
Magistrates judged that Ghita had not committed a sexual offence as he had not intended to cause anyone distress despite the public nature of the act.
The bench deliberated over imposing a community order but decided to impose only a fine because of Ghita’s previous good character.
His name will not appear on the sex offenders register.
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