A Rothwell man offered to teach a young girl how to perform a sex act on the internet - only to find he was actually talking to an undercover police officer.
Duane Eady, 31, was caught out after logging into an online chat room in February last year.
Yesterday (Wednesday) Northampton Crown Court heard how Eady, of Fox Street, began talking to a user called ‘Cumbrian Lass’, whom he believed to be a girl called Katie.
She told him she was 14, was ‘skiving’ school and had told her mum she was feeling unwell.
Chat logs showed Eady had said he liked girls her age as they ‘made him laugh’.
He began asking her innocent questions such as whether she had a boyfriend but it was then that the questioning began to become more sexual, prosecutor Nicola Moore told the court.
She said: “Within a short period of time, the defendant asked her about sex acts.
“The defendant offered assistance and offered to teach her.”
Later that afternoon Eady opened Skype conversations with ‘Cumbrian Lass’ and began performing a sex act on a video call with her.
He was later arrested by police and originally said he believed she was over the age of 18 and not 14, as all users of the chat room are supposed to be.
When he was told by police that ‘Katie’ was in fact an undercover police officer, Eady became tearful and vomited in a police station toilet.
He said that he used Skype because he was bored, and not for sexual gratification.
He pleaded guilty at an earlier court hearing to attempting sexual activity with a female child under 16 without penetration and attempting to engage in sexual activity in the presence of a child under 16.
Mitigating, Matthew Kirk said: “He was so distressed by what he had done he was sick in the police station.
“A community order would be appropriate.”
Eady’s actions could have seen him sent to prison for 18 months, but Judge Rupert Mayo showed leniency and handed him a 36-month community order.
Sentencing, Judge Mayo said: “It’s all too easy for children to be corrupted.
“They do not know when they are being corrupted.
“It’s corruption, it’s endemic and it needs to be stamped out, which is why the police employ people to pose as young boys and girls to weed this activity out.”
Eady was also made the subject of a five-year Sexual Harm Prevention Order, made to sign the Sex Offenders Register for five years and ordered to pay £500 in costs.