A Wirral man has been sentenced to five years and one month in prison for sexual activity with a child.
Neil Rycroft, 48, of Moreton appeared today (Tuesday 29 November) at Liverpool Crown Court. He was also issued with a Lifetime Sexual Harm Prevention Order (SHPO), Restraining Order and ordered to sign the Sex Offenders Register for life.
Rycroft was arrested on Thursday 26 May, the same day that the victim, a 15-year-old girl, reported the offence, which had taken place three days previously in Wirral.
Speaking after the sentencing, Detective Constable Alex Fowler from our Unity team said, “We hope that this sentence goes some way to helping the victim as she comes to terms with this traumatic experience and we will continue to support her. We’d like to praise the whole family’s immense strength and courage in reporting this crime and engaging throughout what can be a harrowing process, through to today’s outcome.
“Rycroft is a predator, who saw a young and vulnerable child as someone to manipulate and abuse. Such offenders should be removed from the streets and closely monitored when the time comes to release them. He had no regard for the psychological impact of his heinous actions, nor the consequences for the victim, the victim’s family and less importantly, his own liberty.
“We treat all allegations of sexual offences sensitively and with compassion and have specially trained officers who ensure victims are listened to, safeguarded and supported from the moment they report a crime and right through the judicial process.
“If anybody is out there suffering in silence we want you to know that there is help and support available, both from Merseyside Police, and from reliable and trusted support groups who will stand with you from the initial report and for as long as you need.”
Anyone with information or who wants to report a sexual offence allegation is asked to call 101 where you will be spoken to by specially trained officers or you can pass information to Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.
If you’ve been affected by sexual violence of any kind don’t be afraid to tell someone, find the courage to come forward and get the help you deserve.
You can report rape, sexual assault and other sexual offences anonymously here: Rape, sexual assault and other sexual offences | Merseyside Police
There is a lot of support available from specialist officers within Merseyside Police and through the Police and Crime Commissioner’s Victim Care Merseyside service delivered jointly by two registered charities.
In Liverpool, Sefton and Wirral, support is provided by Rape and Sexual Abuse Support (RASA) Merseyside who are available on 0151 558 1801 and, in St Helens and Knowsley, by the Rape and Sexual Abuse Support Centre (RASASC) Cheshire and Merseyside who can be contacted on 01925 221 546 or 0330 363 0063.
Image: Merseyside Police