A 67-year-old man who sexually assaulted girls as young as six has been jailed for 12 years.
Stephen David Tilley, of Coppice Road, Ryhall, committed the offences between 1991 and 2012 when the two female victims were aged between six and 13 years old.
At a trial at Leicester Crown Court in February a jury found Tilley guilty of two counts of indecent assault, two counts of indecent assault on a child, attempted rape on a girl under 13-years-old and sexual assault on a female under 13-years-old.
Today (Friday) he was jailed for a total of 12 years.
One of Tilley’s victims, who is now 30, decided to speak out in the hope it will encourage other victims to have the confidence to come forward. Her name cannot be published for legal reasons.
She said: “If this is happening to you, you must tell someone. It is not right. Whatever your abuser is telling you, it is not right and it is them that is in the wrong.
“I have had to learn to deal with it in my own way. He started abusing me when I was between six and eight-years-old and I did not speak out until 2011. I thought, ‘now is the time for me to say something or he will get away with it’.
“I want to encourage people who find themselves in a similar situation to speak out and contact the police so the offender can be punished.”
Detective Sergeant Dave Speight, from the serious crime and safeguarding team of Leicestershire Police, said: “These incidents took place over a long period of time, some of them many years ago, but finally justice has been seen to be done.
“I would like to praise the victims for the bravery they have shown throughout the investigation and subsequent trial. I know it cannot have been easy for them to come forward and make the initial report to police, and from there they have had to relive some of the events they would rather have forgotten from their childhoods.
“Throughout they have acted with the upmost dignity and showed immense courage.
“Leicestershire Police encourages victims to come forward and report incidents of sexual abuse, and feel confident that no matter how long ago the incident may have taken place, it will be thoroughly investigated.
“There is a possibility that there are other people out there who have been a victim of Tilley. Please, if you think this could be you, get in touch with us.
“We have specialist officers and access to a number of support agencies who can help victims.”
Anyone who may have been a victim is asked to call police on 101.