Pair cleared of child sex chargesBy Paul Cassell
December 31, 2012
Two men have told of their relief after they were cleared by a jury of raping and indecently assaulting young girls.
Paul Flynn, 30, of Bath Road, Reading, and Tim Pittway, 49, of Mermaid Close, Winnersh, were among four men facing a total of 47 child sex charges.
The pair were each acquitted last Monday by the jury of all charges relating to the rape and sexual abuse of children following a seven-week trial at Winchester Crown Court.
Their co-defendants, Paul Thomas, 50, from Basingstoke, Hampshire and Jerry Lee Howe, 40, from Accrington, Lancashire, were found guilty of a total of 28 similar offences.
The trial heard the attacks spanned 15 years from the mid-1990s to 2010 and that the victims were abused separately at different times and locations.
After the hearing, Mr Flynn told the Reading Post: “It hasn't properly sunk in yet.
“I feel happy but still in shock as I have waited so long to clear my name, even though I declared my innocence from the very beginning.
“I was proper shaking in the dock knowing my life and future are in someone else’s hands but I am now relieved and can look forward and get on with my life.”
Mr Flynn, a father-of-three, said from the moment of his arrest his reputation was “degraded” by the accusations and that as a result he was forced to quit his job as a storeman in a warehouse.
“All through that time I was livid. I still feel a bit angry that I was brought into all this,” he said.
“It was awful because it’s one of the most serious crimes you can be accused of, and there’s all the pressure of going through it and not knowing what people are thinking.
“When the verdict came in I just went numb, but I am pleased and glad justice has been done.”
On Thomas and Howe, he said: “I feel they have got what they deserved. You cannot go around for all those years and hide what you have done.
“What they have done is sick and no child should have to go through what they put them through.”
Mr Pittway praised the police’s professionalism and while he insisted he did not want to be bitter towards the accusers, he believed lie detectors should form part of court cases.
“I do think one thing they should do is bring in lie detectors,” he said.
“There is an argument for them. They are not 100 per cent reliable but I think if they were used, it would give those that are wrongly accused some kind of chance in their case.”
He recalled following his arrest and throughout the case he felt “dirty and horrible” and when he had been out, he was paranoid that people were watching him.
Describing the moment he was acquitted, he said: “I am just relieved. It has been a horrendous experience, and something I wouldn’t wish upon my worst enemy.
“If people have done something they deserve to get what happens to them, but I felt that it was like being hit over the back of the head with a cricket bat.
“You function but it is just the most awful thing to be accused of.
“You feel despair, it’s the worst feeling in the world. I just want to get my life back on track now.”
Thomas and Howe were remanded in custody and will be sentenced on January 29.