Former traffic warden jailed for four and a half years for abusing boy

Shane Vertigan

Shane Vertigan who has been sentenced to four and a half years for sexually abusing a teenage boy. - Credit: Archant

A former Norfolk traffic warden who sexually abused a 13-year-old boy three decades ago has been jailed for four and half years.

Shane Vertigan, 52, who also worked previously as a police community support officer (PCSO) in Fakenham, preyed upon Wesley Spinks, who was aged 13 at the time of the offences. 

The abuser was jailed at Norwich Crown Court on Monday (December 13) after having previously admitted three counts of gross indecency with a child under 14 and two counts of indecent assault on a boy under 14 dating back to 1992 and 1993.

Vertigan, who appeared via videolink from prison, is already serving a six-year sentence imposed two years ago for sexual assaults he committed against a teenage girl in the mid 2000s.

Mr Spinks, now aged 41, has waived his right to anonymity. He read out an emotional statement to the court about the impact the abuse has had on his life.

Addressing his abuser directly and with his voice breaking, the former Hellesdon High School pupil said: “ Shane, I will never truly know the emotional and life changing effects that your abuse had on me.”

Wesley Spinks 

Wesley Spinks who has waived his anonymity to speak out on the abuse he suffered in a bid to help give others the confidence to break their silence. - Credit: Simon Parkin

He added: "Through the years your actions shut me down emotionally and physically, having to relive your disgusting actions daily , where I can both smell and remember what you made me do to you, all for your own self-gratification.”

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Prosecutor Lori Tucker said Mr Spinks had known and trusted Vertigan but that he had sexually abused the then teenage boy after coming into his bedroom wearing nothing but his underwear. On another occasion he abused him in a van before taking him to a Norwich City match.

Sentencing Vertigan, Judge Maureen Bacon said he had committed a “terrible abuse of an innocent child”.

“I have heard from the very considerable impact your offending has had upon him over the years,” she said.

“He describes how his emotions have been disabled and disturbed and how he had descended into alcohol dependency which mercifully he has fought his way back from.

“He stands in this court with sufficient magnanimity to forgive you.”

Juliet Donovan, mitigating, said Vertigan has been married for 22 years and had been involved in church activities for many years.

“He has written an apology note,” she said. “In essence it is a deep apology. He realises what he has done and the effect he has had.”

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