Sexual grooming accused is granted bail variation for university study

Craigavon Courthouse. INPT21-239.
Craigavon Courthouse. INPT21-239.

A 21-year-old man accused of sexual grooming of a child has had his bail conditions varied so he can study at a university in England.

The bail variation was made on behalf of Christopher Davison, Granville Gardens, Portadown, last Wednesday at Craigavon Magistrates Court.

He is charged that on dates between July 20, 2015, and August 17, 2105, for the purpose of sexual gratification he intentionally communicated with a boy under the age of 16.

Davison is also accused that between the same dates he messaged a person on one or more occasions to intend to do an act which would involve the commission of a relevant offence contrary to the Sexual Offences Order.

He also faces a charge of possession of an indecent photograph of a boy and an allegation of sexual communication with another boy.

A solicitor representing Davison told last Wednesday’s court that his client was due to go to England at the weekend to study at a university in Sheffield.

A police officer said there were objections because the university was outside the jurisdiction and there was the possibility of further offences.

She explained that the defendant would be in the proximity of young people in university and a condition of his bail was that he should not have unsupervised contact with young people under the age of 18 which could not be supervised in England.

Davison’s solicitor said that his client had had always attended at court, had no previous convictions and has not re-offended.

District Judge, Mr Peter King, said he was going to agree to the bail variation so as not to prejudice the defendant’s education.

He varied the bail for Davison to reside at an address in Sheffield while the other conditions – no contact with persons from the IFA, not to enter Banbridge town and no unaccompanied contact with persons under the age of 18 – remain.

The judge adjourned the case until October 28.