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Woman 'couldn't speak' after drunken attack on train heading for Sittingbourne station

By Sean Axtell

A man groped a girl on a train then taunted her with racist remarks after she shunned his drunken attack.

John Harbour’s victim “couldn’t speak” following the assault and then said “I feel dirty” and took a bath once she found her voice.

Judge James O'Mahony told Harbour, who has 111 offences to his name, “your list goes on and on and on.”

Canterbury Crown Court
Canterbury Crown Court

Harbour, who is currently in jail for a separate offence, threatened to set upon one good Samaritan who came to the girl’s aid, Canterbury Crown Court heard on Thursday.

Judge O'Mahony said: “She got on a train and heard the two males coming onto the carriage, she heard the younger male say ‘I’m sticking with this one, better legs.’

“The defendant sat down next to her, they both told her she was very pretty and started talking about her among themselves.

“He placed his right hand on her right knee.”

Judge James O'Mahony
Judge James O'Mahony

The judge told how the pair began play-fighting - then the 39-year-old defendant made lewd remarks about penetrating the victim.

When another passenger asked the defendant and his pal where they were going, Harbour responded “I will knock you out".

Judge O'Mahony continued: “The defendant who was still standing there grabbed the victim’s head, pulled it towards him and tried to kiss her."

When the girl managed to pull away he made further racist derogatory comments.

“Your list goes on and on and on...” Judge James O'Mahony

The court heard the victim, who cannot be named for legal reasons, fled the carriage to the back of Sittingbourne Station and phoned a relative but could not talk.

When she could speak she said “I feel dirty” and took a bath following the incident on August 11, 2017.

Harbour, who remained seated in the dock at Canterbury Crown Court, had pleaded guilty to sexual assault at Margate Magistrate’s Court on January 15 this year.

At the same court he also pleaded guilty to possessing a bladed article, namely a six-inch kitchen knife, two days after attacking the girl.

Sittingbourne station
Sittingbourne station

CCTV spotted Harbour and another male intoxicated and asleep at Sittingbourne Station.

After approaching Harbour a police officer discovered the weapon inside his pocket.

Judge O'Mahony adjourned sentencing for six weeks while a pre-sentence report is prepared.

He ordered Harbour to be remanded in custody.

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