A man has been placed on the sex offenders’ register after sexually assaulting a heavily pregnant woman.
Darren Odie, 22, of St Sunniva Street in Lerwick, turned on his victim in a dimly lit stairwell during a night of heavy drinking.
At Lerwick Sheriff Court on Tuesday he admitted touching her after she had come out of her town flat to investigate a power cut. She pushed him away and ran back to her flat in fear and distress.
Procurator fiscal Duncan MacKenzie said Odie had been going to another flat to take part in a drinking session when he saw the complainer on the stairwell.
He said there was a brief acknowledgement, during which Odie asked the woman if she was pregnant. She replied that she was.
He placed his arm round her shoulder, grabbed her stomach and kissed her on the neck.
“This was more than a brief greeting, this went on for a little bit of time,” said Mr MacKenzie.
“She managed to push him away and run back to her own flat where her partner was. She was extremely distressed – maybe not by what actually happened to her, but by fear of what could have happened.”
Emergency lighting had come on as a result of the power cut, but the stairwell was still very dark which “added to the sinister nature of this [offence] for this young woman”.
The court heard the cause of the offence was more to do with Odie’s alcohol dependency than any desire to obtain sexual gratification.
However Sheriff Graeme Napier warned him he would still be registered as a sex offender.
Calling for a social inquiry report, he continued the case until 21st September. Odie was released on bail.