Friday 15 December 2017

Man who threatened and sexually assaulted step daughter jailed

Laura Johnston and inset George Crombie
Laura Johnston and inset George Crombie

Isabel Hayes and Sonya McLean

A man who put a dog lead around his step daughter's neck while sexually assaulting her as a child has been jailed for two and half years.

George Crombie (47) also had a knife stuck in the waistband of his pyjama bottoms during a separate assault.

He told his stepdaughter there would be “murder in this flat” if she told her mother about the abuse, which took place over a three-year period when she was aged between 10 and 13 years old.

Last week Laura Johnston, now in her twenties, read her victim impact statement to the court in which she condemned Crombie for “betraying her trust and love in him”.

George Crombie who appeared in The Criminal Courts of Justice charged with the rape of his step daughter Laura Johnson. Photo: Tony Gavin 28/11/2016
George Crombie who appeared in The Criminal Courts of Justice charged with the rape of his step daughter Laura Johnson. Photo: Tony Gavin 28/11/2016

“How could I ever get over what my stepfather, who I loved and trusted, did to me as a 10-year-old girl,” Ms Johnston said. The court heard she wished to waive her right to anonymity.

Crombie with an address in Bloomfield Ave, South Circular Road, Dublin 8 pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to eight counts of sexually assaulting Ms Johnston in their Ringsend home between February 2004 and December 2006.

On Monday Judge Melanie Greally said it was clear Crombie was satisfying a particular sexual fetish during the assaults and referred to the use of the dog lead as “extremely frightening” and “degrading”

She said Ms Johnston had regarded Crombie as her natural father and that as such the “breach of trust was monumental” before she described the abuse as both “unrelenting” and “predictable” occurring every Thursday and Saturday.

Judge Greally said having heard the victim impact statement it was clear that Ms Johnston continued and would continue to struggle with the “premature loss of innocence” and “blight on her childhood that can never be removed”.

She acknowledged that Crombie had made admissions and spared his victim a trial before she imposed concurrent sentences totalling two and half years.

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