12 February 2013
Detectives are urging parents not to be afraid of snooping on
their teenage children as they use social media for fear they could
be easy prey for online groomers.
The warning comes as a 36-year-old Army Reservist was sentenced
to 17 years imprisonment after being found guilty of abducting and
raping a 12-year-old girl who he met through instant messaging.
Adrian Rose of Rochester Drive in Westcliffe-on-Sea, Essex, had
denied seven charges of rape, six charges of abduction and one
charge of grooming but was convicted by a jury at Norwich Crown
Court last month.
Rose was sentenced today by Judge Stephen Holt who had
previously praised police officers for "a brilliant piece of good
old fashioned policing".
He was sentenced to 17 years for each rape offence, three and a
half years for each abduction offence, and five years for the
grooming offence. These sentences will run concurrently.
"Young people often have no idea who they are really chatting to and parents have to ask themselves whether they would really feel comfortable letting their 13-year-old talk freely with a 30-year-old stranger."
Det Supt Julie Wvendth
Rose was also placed
indefinitely on the Sex Offenders Register and has been banned
from using social media for life.
Police approached Rose on Sunday 19 February 2012 when he was
parked in his car with the on Broadland Business Park in Norwich.
The officers wanted to make checks on the vehicle due to the
appearance of its number plates and windows, but when they found
the girl inside they spoke to her and Rose.
The officers took the girl home after becoming concerned about
her age and the fact she was alone with him. During the journey the
victim said that she had been in a sexual relationship with Rose
after having met him through Blackberry Messenger.
Investigating officer, Detective Constable Steve Graves, said:
“The victim in this case is a very shattered young girl, but she is
determined to get on with her life. Rose is a predator who has
denied his actions throughout, which meant the girl had to relive
the traumatic events which have happened to her in order to bring
him to justice. She and her family have received support from
police and will continue to do so, and I commend her bravery in
Detective Superintendent Julie Wvendth has today warned parents
of the dangers social media can pose to young users. "Many parents
can feel apprehensive about being too nosey about their children's
lives particularly when they hit the teenage years. But this is the
time when they need to adopt prying eyes and become much more
mindful of the dangers the online world can bring.
"Young people often have no idea who they are really chatting to
and parents have to ask themselves whether they would really feel
comfortable letting their 13-year-old talk freely with a
Det Supt Wvendth also stressed the same warnings also apply to
teenage boys who could unknowingly be communicating with young
girls via networking sites or chatrooms.
"Many teenage boys may see online chat as harmless however
should conversations become explicit they may well be in danger of
committing an offence for which they could be arrested."
Parents can visit the Child Exploitation and Online Protection
Centre's (CEOP) 'Thinkuknow' website at: https://www.thinkuknow.co.uk/parents/ for
Grooming is a process of manipulating a child to gain control
over them; as a parent or carer you should be approachable so that
if your child is concerned about something, they know they can talk
If you are concerned about someone’s behaviour towards your
child, you can report this directly to CEOP.
Parents should set rules around internet use and and help their
child to understand that strangers online are still strangers and
they need to keep their personal information private. Help them
understand that it is never a good idea to meet someone in the real
world who they first met online but, if they do, then they should
take a parent or trusted adult with them.