Newport woman abducted schoolgirl after grooming her | #childabductors

A WOMAN walked free from court after admitting grooming, abducting and having sex with a teenage girl she was “infatuated” with.

Phoebe Pearce, 23, met the 14-year-old schoolgirl through Facebook but was warned off by the teenager’s mother.

She lured the girl away from her home in the Welsh valleys and had sexual activity with her.

Cardiff Crown Court heard Pearce was on police bail at the time and had been ordered to keep away from the “vulnerable” girl.

She admitted grooming, abduction and sexual activity with a child – offences which Judge Jeremy Jenkins said would normally lead to a “substantial period of imprisonment.”

But the judge said Pearce would not be in prison long enough to benefit from a sex offender programme and there were no programmes for female offenders in the community.

Pearce, of Harlequin Drive, was sentenced to a three-year community order and made the subject of a sexual harm prevention order for five years.

The judge told her: “These are very serious matters – you met the child in question as a result of online activity.

“The relationship between you quickly turned into a sexual one.

“You went to the house on a number of occasions and the girl’s mother told you directly you should not continue the relationship with her.

“You did not stop, you persisted despite the mother’s protestations. A relationship developed and some sexual activity took place.

“You knew what you were doing was wrong but you carried on doing it.”

Police retrieved text messages from Pearce’s mobile phone and one about the victim said: “She’s youngish but I don’t care.”

The court heard Pearce was arrested in March and bailed on the condition she kept away from the teenager.

The judge said: “Almost immediately having being released you contacted her again.

“Following a report from the girl’s mother you were arrested having taken the girl from her home and you were found in a park.

“I am satisfied that having met the girl you became infatuated with her very quickly.

“You ignored every piece of advice and every order you were made subject to and that culminated in the abduction.”

The court heard Pearce was a “vulnerable young lady” with  “significant cognitive impairments” and the schoolgirl was a willing party in the relationship.

But the judge told the defendant: “It must not be forgotten that she was 14 years of age, inexperienced and very vulnerable herself.

“It seems to me that on balance, you having no previous convictions, vulnerable in yourself and having tasted what custody is like I can deal exceptionally with you in a more constructive way than simply sending you into custody.”

Pearce was told she would go to jail for five years if she broke the terms of the community order.

“She was also ordered to register as a sex offender for five years.

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