A registered sex offender has been sent back to prison for breaching a Sexual Harm Prevention Order for the fifth time by approaching a nursery.
David Evans was released from custody in July and arrested three months later, despite his support worker reminding him of the terms of his order on an almost daily basis.
Sentencing him at Cardiff Crown Court, Judge Tracey Lloyd-Clarke said: “It is very rare that these courts have to deal with someone who has committed such persistent breaches.”
The court heard Evans was released from prison on July 19 and his support worker spent time explaining the details of the order.
Abigail Jackson, prosecuting, said the order banned Evans from going within 100m of any nursery, school, leisure centre or other facility used by children.
David Evans’ record of offending
January 31, 2011
Evans is sentenced for 16 counts of making indecent images of children, one count of possessing indecent images of children and two counts of possessing extreme pornography.
August 10, 2012
He breaches the Sexual Offences Prevention Order for the first time by going within 100m of a leisure centre and is jailed for 30 months.
June 21, 2013
The defendant breaches the Sexual Offences Prevention Order for the second time and is jailed for 28 months.
January 12, 2015
Evans breaches the order for a third time and is jailed for 15 months.
February 24, 2017
He is jailed for 30 months for three counts of possessing indecent images of children, one count of possessing a prohibited image and one count of possessing extreme pornography. He was caught looking at child abuse images on his phone while in Cardiff Central Library. Police found 121 indecent images on his device.
June 5, 2018
The defendant breaches the order for a fourth time by standing outside a nursery at the university and is jailed for 27 months.
July 19, 2019
He is released from prison.
October 20, 2019
Evans breaches the order. He is arrested and recalled to prison until September 2020.
Ms Jackson said the support worker made sure the defendant knew what 100m looked like and reminded him about the order several times a week.
Prosecutors said the support worker pointed out he must have walked past St Monica’s and Gladstone primary schools.
Evans commented he must have walked past 300 or 400 children in the schools and was told CCTV would be checked to establish whether he had breached the order.
The court heard he replied: “If I’m honest, I’m in trouble.”
Prosecutors said the support worker viewed the CCTV, which showed Evans coming out of the lane by Cathays railway station on to Park Place.
He was seen to cross the road and wait at the main entrance to the university, before looking towards the nursery building and walking within 30m of it.
Further CCTV showed him going into the National Museum Wales to the Dippy dinosaur exhibition, which prosecutors said was “very popular with children”.
Ms Jackson added: “He walked into the foyer, where he was surrounded by adults and children.” Evans was seen to look around and leave again.
The defendant was arrested and recalled to prison until September 2020. He was interviewed and admitted walking past the schools and the nursery.
Ms Jackson said the detail about the museum was for context, as Evans was charged with one breach in relation to the nursery incident.
Judge Lloyd-Clarke noted the defendant admitted at least three breaches in his interview and asked why he was only charged with one.
She said “the court’s hands [were] tied” and she could only sentence on the single, specific allegation relating to the nursery, not on the basis he went into the museum.
The judge said that affected where the offending would sit within the sentencing guidelines when it came to assessing the defendant’s culpability.
She asked for a full written explanation of the charging decision within the next seven days, adding: “[This] very much restricts my sentencing powers.”
Prosecutors said Evans had 31 previous offences on his record and was on licence when the latest offence was committed. Ms Jackson said this was his fifth breach of the order.
Evans, 38, from Lewis Street in Riverside, admitted breaching a Sexual Harm Prevention Order.
Judge Lloyd-Clarke asked: “Is this defendant someone who is incapable of understanding the terms of the order?”
Adam Sharp, defending, replied: “I do not make that submission.”
He said there were concerns about his client’s level of understanding and he is having ongoing assessments for autism, Asperger’s and personality disorder.
Mr Sharp said the defendant was “forthcoming” with his support worker and had previously raised concerns about another route through the city centre.
He told the court Evans had a difficult childhood and was raised in care, where he became “institutionalised” and is now “very socially isolated”.
The defence counsel said the incident happened on a Sunday, when there were no children in the nursery, and his client was on the opposite side of the road.
Judge Lloyd-Clarke told the defendant: “I am satisfied that your actions were a quite deliberate breach.”
Evans was jailed for 20 months and the indefinite Sexual Harm Prevention Order and sex offender notification requirements remain in place.