A British man who sexually assaulted a 4-year-old girl as she slept and then claimed in court he thought the victim was “the 18-year-old babysitter” has been sentenced to serve 32 months in prison.
Conrad Pritchard, 22, faced a judge at Manchester Crown Court on Thursday, Jan. 25, who handed down the sentence after finding him guilty of sexual assault of a child under 13, according to the Manchester Evening News.
Police hailed the court’s decision and described Pritchard’s excuse as absurd.
Detective Constable Paul Davies of GMP’s Salford borough said that Pritchard’s “attempt to justify what happened by claiming that he thought a 4-year-old girl was actually 18 is absurd and he is now where he deserves to be,” the news service reported.
On Sunday, June 25, 2017, Pritchard was out drinking with three companions in a pub in Salford, UK, before heading to the home of one of the group, the Blackpool Gazette reported. The four continued to drink at the house.
At one point Pritchard crept upstairs and carried out the assault on the girl. Her cries woke the mother, who confronted Pritchard and chased him out of the house.
He was later arrested.
Pritchard initially claimed a state of such intoxication that he was unaware anyone was in the bed. He changed his story later, claiming that he thought the little girl was actually the 18-year-old babysitter.
This was dismissed by the judge, who found his explanation “inconceivable.”
Detective Constable Davies said, “Pritchard targeted a young girl as she slept in her own home so that he could satisfy his own appalling urges. He deliberately targeted his victim and since the incident has continued to show very little remorse for his actions.”
“What he did that night left his victim understandably distraught and we are continuing to provide her with support from specially trained officers,” Davies said.
Pritchard pleaded guilty to the offense at an earlier hearing at the Manchester and Salford Magistrate’s Court.
At sentencing he was handed down an additional 8 weeks for an earlier crime of shoplifting, to serve in addition to the 32 months.