Published: 17:53, 14 May 2021
| Updated: 18:18, 14 May 2021
A child abuser has been jailed for five years after being found guilty of multiple sex offences in a landmark case.
Jason Beadle, of Dover Road, Northfleet, sexually abused a child in Tilbury, Essex between 2017 and 2018.
The 34-year-old was arrested in October 2018 when the offences came to light.
In September of the following year he was charged with four counts of sexual assault of a child and two counts of assault by penetration.
He denied the charges but was convicted last month following a trial at Basildon Crown Court.
The case was the first where Essex Police used new regulations which allow the evidence of vulnerable victims or witnesses to be pre-recorded at an early stage, before trial.
This means their recollection of what happened is fresher and they don’t then have to go through the ordeal of giving evidence at an actual trial.
Last Wednesday, at the same court, Beadle was jailed for five years.
Investigating officer Detective Constable Dominic Greenham said: “No child should suffer the ordeal Jason Beadle subjected his victim to and I want to praise their courage in coming forward and their bravery during the investigation.
“Beadle abused them for his own sexual gratification and will now spend the foreseeable future behind bars.
“These investigations are often complex and sensitive but we have specialist officers to carry out enquiries and support victims.”
The new measures used in this case, known as Section 28 of the Youth Justice and Criminal Evidence Act 1999, was launched in Essex in August 2020.
Detective Superintendent Neil Pudney, from the forces' Crime and Public Protection Command, said: “This case is a real landmark for Essex Police as it was the first where we used this new measure and I think it is going to provide real benefits to victims of crime.
“It improves the quality of evidence we can put forward to a trial but, more importantly, means a vulnerable victim does not have to go through the ordeal of giving evidence in a court room.
“Better quality evidence increases the chance of a conviction, and therefore justice for the victim.
“And giving evidence at an actual trial can be a stressful and intimidating prospect, especially for vulnerable victims or witnesses so having this measure in place which means their evidence can be heard without them having to stand up in court means we can better support victims.
“This was the first case where we have used this measure but it certainly is not the last.”