A KARATE instructor who groped two teenage girls has been jailed for three-and-a-half years.
Yesterday Darren Lymer was found guilty of two counts of sexual activity with a child and one count of sexual assault.
As the verdicts were read out at Oxford Crown Court, Lymer, formerly of Anson Close, Marcham, near Abingdon, bowed his head and closed his eyes in the dock, and there were gasps from the public gallery.
Afterwards the father of the younger victim said he was happy his daughter’s abuser had been found guilty and praised her courage.
He said: “I would like to pay tribute to the incredibly courageous and brave teenagers who gave accounts of what must have been a frightening and harrowing experience.
“That is what led us to this point and I am grateful it has been rewarded by what I consider the right verdicts in this trial.
“My daughter will be happy that the experience can be drawn to a close.
“I don’t think she will find any pleasure in either the verdicts or the sentence, she’ll just be happy that an unhappy experience is over.
“Inevitably it has had an effect on everybody, but I hope the courage, bravery and resolve she has shown will help her to put the damage that has been done behind her, and move forward to a happy life.”
Lymer, 50, carried out the assault in August 2011 when he groped a teenage girl and the other offences in January last year against a younger teenage girl.
Jonathan Coode, defending, said his client still strongly maintained his innocence.
He said: “This case and these allegations have already had a very profound effect on Mr Lymer.
“Not only was he extremely ill and hospitalised as a result, but both he and his wife have moved to Devon.”
Mr Coode added that Lymer also lost his job as a delivery driver when his employer found out about the case.
Passing sentence Judge Mary Jane Mowat said: “Offences like this have a lasting effect on their victims.
“They are things that cannot be put out of their minds and can cause harm for years and years.”
DC Tom Smalley said: “This result just goes to show that Thames Valley Police takes a firm stance when it comes to sexual offences.
“We will do everything we can to prosecute those responsible and it also shows the courage of those who come forward to report sexual crimes.”
Lymer will now be on the sex offenders’ register indefinitely.
8:30am Tuesday 6th October 2015
A FATHER has been jailed for nine years for violently shaking his baby son to death in a fit of frustration.
8:30am Tuesday 6th October 2015
The brother of Oxford United striker James Roberts has died after being involved in a car accident on Saturday night.
9:00am Tuesday 6th October 2015
A D-DAY war veteran has received the highest honour from the French Government more than 70 years after landing on the beaches of Normandy.
8:00am Tuesday 6th October 2015
THE 5p levy on plastic carrier bags has been dubbed a “no brainer” as government introduces the scheme to save millions in clean up costs.
7:00am Tuesday 6th October 2015
TWO Oxfordshire MPs spoke of the love and “wonderful” care hospices gave their families as they helped launch a week dedicated to the vital centres.
6:30am Tuesday 6th October 2015
CARE workers have described the moment they found an autistic teenager unconscious in a bath at a health unit, an inquest heard.
6:00am Tuesday 6th October 2015
A TEMPORARY narrowing of the road in St Giles could be carried out to see if the street could be more pedestrianised.
12:40pm Monday 5th October 2015
A FATHER accused of shaking his 11-week-old baby to death has been cleared of murder.
12:03pm Monday 5th October 2015
THE A34 in South Hinksey is currently partially blocked due to a broken down tipper-truck.
11:50am Monday 5th October 2015
PARTS of Oxfordshire are due to be hit by heavy rain later today, according to the Met Office. A severe weather warning has been issued by the agency for the South East, which will be in place from 12pm until 10pm today. It has been forecast that some areas will see more than 15 mm of rain in an hour, with overall totals more than 40 mm in several hours. Small patches of localised flooding and disruptions to transport are also possible. A Met Office spokesman said: "A very complex area of low pressure will bring warm, moist air northwards into Britain. There is a developing signal for heavy rain to affect some southeastern parts of England later on Monday. "Some minor disruption due to flooding is likely, with an additional risk of some very isolated more substantial impacts."
8:30am Monday 5th October 2015
A FAMILY stole thousands of pounds of benefits from a man with severe learning disabilities while forcing him to do menial and manual labour for £5 a day, a court heard.
7:00am Monday 5th October 2015
GREY pavements will be transformed with striking street art as one woman hopes to chalk up yet another successful art event this weekend.
4:01pm Sunday 4th October 2015
TRAFFIC is heavy on the A34 between the Wendlebury interchange and Pear Tree Roundabout after an earlier crash.
8:30am Saturday 3rd October 2015
A YOUNG woman who fell in the river after a seizure on her way to work has thanked two boaters for saving her life.