A MAN who attempted to “groom” a teenage girl has been jailed after he stabbed her father with a steak knife.
Luke Hughes had been texting the 14-year-old girl and drunkenly tried to kiss her, a court heard.
A doorstep brawl erupted after the girl’s father discovered what had been going on and appeared at Hughes’ home in Leechmere Road, Sunderland.
Hughes, 55, pleaded guilty to inciting a child to engage in sexual activity and unlawful wounding.
Christopher Rose, prosecuting at Newcastle Crown Court, said: “He began to send the girl text messages, which although generally innocuous, one said he had been thinking about her all day.”
One night last summer, the girl and a 14-year-old friend met Hughes.
Mr Rose said: “During the visit, Hughes gave the friend a can of lager. He asked both girls if they would lose their virginities to him when they were 16.
“He made references to the size of the girls’ breasts.”
He also told the girls he had a photograph of his private parts on his mobile phone and then asked if they wanted to see it.
The defendant made two attempts to kiss the girl, who pushed him away before leaving the house with her friend.
The court heard how Hughes continued to text the girl and ask why she was not replying to him.
The victim made it clear that she wanted nothing more to do with him, and told her parents what had happened.
The court were told how the girl’s enraged father went to Hughes’ home in “a state of agitation.”
Mr Rose told the court how the father rang the police from a telephone box stating what had happened.
The man told the police that his family were likely to kill the defendant and at one point threatened to kill him, himself.
Hughes’ answered his door, armed with a steak knife.
A fight broke out between the two men, during which Hughes attacked the father with a steak knife.
The victim was treated in hospital for cuts to his head and cheek and a bite wound to his finger.
Hughes was arrested and interviewed, he claimed that the father had come round to his home and accused him of grooming his daughter.
He claimed to have acted in self defence.
In victim impact statements, the girl and her father described how their lives had been ‘devastated’ by what happened.
Tony Hawks, defending said: “He is a man in his late 50s.
“He has cardiac problems following a series of strokes four years ago.
“He had been drunk when the offence happened.
“It was a disgraceful way for someone to behave.”
Hughes was jailed for two years, he has been placed on the sexual offenders register for seven years and was made subject to a sexual offences prevention order for seven years.
Passing sentence, Judge Roger Thorn QC, said: “You caused the most enormous upset to this family.
“It’s hardly much of a surprise that when the father learnt of what you were doing he was grievously upset.
“He went to visit you and you, of course , were waiting for him and had armed yourself with a steak knife.
“You caused grievous injuries with at least two stabs.”