A Sheffield man who carried out two sex attacks on teenage girls – including one while a 13-year-old victim was on the phone to a helpless relative – has been jailed for five years.
Bradley Simpkins, 21, of Arbourthorne Road, targeted the 13-year-old girl in a gennel near to Gleadless Road as she was walking home from school in April last year.
Detective Constable Claire Franklin, investigating officer, said: “The teenager had been on the phone to a family member when she was attacked. This meant her horrified relative heard her screaming for help as she listened helplessly at the other end of the line.
“Incredibly, in the struggle, the girl managed to activate a security alarm on her phone, which startled Simpkins, causing him to run off.”
Days earlier, Simpkins had attacked another victim, an 18-year-old woman, as she walked to work in Gleadless.
DC Franklin said: “The victim was pulled to the ground as she was on her way to catch a bus near to Gleadless Common Fields. He grabbed her from behind and ripped part of her clothing off. As she tried to fight him off, something distracted him and he left the scene.
“This has had a profound impact on the victim, who was simply going about her daily life.”
As part of their investigations, South Yorkshire Police released CCTV images on social media, and soon after Simpkins was identified and arrested at his home.
He pleaded guilty to two counts of sexual assault at Sheffield Crown Court on 19 February.
Yesterday he was sentenced to five years’ imprisonment and was placed on the sex offenders’ register for life. He will also be subject to a Sexual Harm Prevention Order for 10 years.
DC Franklin added: “I know anyone reading this will feel a shiver run down their spine. To target young women in this way is horrifying to all of us and he has quite rightly received a significant sentence.
“I cannot speak highly enough of the victims and witnesses in this case, who have unfalteringly supported our investigation and been prepared to attend court to see Simpkins brought to justice.
“They have all demonstrated great bravery. I must pay particular tribute to his 13-year-old victim, who was courageous enough to face cross-examination in court.
“Simpkins is now behind bars, which is where he should be and I hope the wider community is satisfied and reassured by the outcome.”