Former cop jailed for sexually abusing young girl over five-year period in Fife
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On each occasion Aldridge would apologise after the abuse, promise it would not happen again and ask her not to tell anyone.
Aldridge, 76, of Golf View, Cardenden, appeared for sentencing at Dunfermline Sheriff Court. He previously admitted offences that were committed between August 2005 and August 2010 at Dover Park, Dunfermline, when he used lewd, indecent and libidinous practices towards the girl.
The court was told that Aldridge lived in Surrey before coming to Scotland and in 2001 moved into a house in Dunfermline. He had been a British Transport Police officer retiring around 2002 then worked as a driving instructor.
The victim, who is now 26, was regularly looked after by Aldridge and his wife at their home, when she was a child. On one occasion after touching the girl, Aldridge, said “please don’t tell anybody” because he would “get in big trouble”. The abuse happened on “multiple occasions” until the girl was 14.
Depute fiscal Katherine Fraser said that initially the girl did not tell anyone as she “felt sorry for him and did not want him to get into trouble”.
On each occasion the girl froze and kept quiet. However on one occasion she shouted “help” in the hope that someone would come and see what was happening. One time she locked herself in the toilet but he used a coin to unlock the door and pinned her down on the floor.
After he was finally confronted in 2012, Aldridge admitted to his wife that he had been touching the girl. He agreed to have counselling and the police were not contacted at that time. However, after Aldridge told the counsellor he had sexually abused the girl, the police were contacted.
At that stage the victim, who was then 15, did not provide a full disclosure to officers as she was fearful of what may happen to him. Aldridge was cautioned and charged but no action was taken by the Crown at that stage. In March 2021, after an incident had triggered old memories, the woman gave a second statement to the police revealing the full extent of the abuse.
Sentencing had been deferred for a social work report and it “didn’t make for particularly good reading” conceded defence solicitor Stephen Morrison who said there was “a high degree of victim-blaming” and that the report’s author had rightly concluded the behaviour was sexually motivated.
Sheriff Macnair told Aldridge: “She was far too young to be blamed for anything. You show no remorse apart from remorse about being caught. Even now you minimise what you have done.”
The sheriff jailed Aldridge for four and a half years. An indefinite Sexual Offences Prevention Order was imposed on Aldridge and he was also put on the sex offenders register for an indefinite period.