An Army reservist who was reported to police after trying to ‘smooch’ with an under age girl has been ordered to sign the sex offenders register.
Andrew Hargreaves, of Meadow Street, Accrington, offered the girl alcohol during a party and asked her if she wanted to go outside with him while he had a cigarette, Burnley Crown Court heard.
The 27-year-old then asked her how she was and she told him she was under age.
Lisa Worsley, prosecuting, told the court how Hargreaves then asked her to go to another room and ‘get to know each other better and maybe have a smooch’.
The court heard when the victim again told Hargreaves she was under age he responded by saying ‘it didn’t matter’.
Miss Worsley said: “[The victim] formed the opinion that he was either on drugs or really drunk from how he seemed as he was slurring his words.”
Miss Worsley said the victim later reported the incident to her mum and said she ‘felt scared’.
Hargreaves pleaded guilty to causing or inciting a child to engage in sexual activity.
He was given a six-month conditional discharge and ordered to sign the sex offenders register for six months
Simon Mintz, defending, said: “He admitted it and committed the crime and sadly we are now here.
“It’s sad because he’s a young man who has a good job and is an Army reservist.”
Judge Beverley Lunt said the victim was right to report the incident but lamented it ending up at the Crown Court.
She said: “She was right to tell her mother and I don’t criticise the girl for what she did and I don’t criticise her family.
“But for this to have ended up with a 27-year-old man of previous good character in the Crown Court, this is not what this offence was made for.
Sentencing, she said: “You said something very, very stupid.
“You never touched her, tried to touch her, pursue her or follow her.
“There’s not a single feature that takes this beyond extremely ill-chosen words by a man to this girl.
“I’m entirely satisfied this is out of character for you.”