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19 year old "shy, awkward" UK student convicted of sexual assault for touching 17 year old on hand and waist

EviLore

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A 'shy and awkward' student is facing jail after he touched a teenager 'in an attempt to befriend her.'

Jamie Griffiths, 19, Googled 'how to make a friend' then came into contact with the 17-year-old during two attempts to engage her in conversation.

The victim burst into tears during the second encounter and went to police with her mother, claiming Griffiths 'would have touched her breast had she not moved away'.

She claimed her school work suffered as a result of the contact, leaving her unable to sit her mock exams and apply to Oxford University.


Griffiths, who lives with his parents and now studies at Durham University, denied two charges of sexual assault, claiming he was 'shy, anxious and awkward'.

He said he had 'clumsily' approached the girl in an attempt 'to make a friend but the words didn't come out.'

Griffiths was convicted at Manchester Magistrates' Court and will be sentenced later this month. The offence carries a maximum sentence of ten years jail if dealt with at a crown court and he faces being ordered to sign the Sex Offender Register.

The incidents occurred between October and November last year while the pair were studying A levels at a secondary school in Knutsford, the court heard.


The girl, now 18, said she had been walking home when she encountered Griffiths on a railway bridge.

She told the hearing: 'I saw him facing a hedge and I thought it was really weird. As I walked towards him, he suddenly swung round so he was facing me.

'As soon as he moved I moved and said: 'stop' and he touched my arm. I sort of jolted out of the way and went into the road to avoid him and he very quickly walked away.

'I think it would have been on my breast had I not moved. When it first happened I didn't think much of it. I forgot about it because I had my exams and just thought it was weird behaviour.'

She said she encountered Griffiths a second time: 'He suddenly moved to walk in front of me, looked me straight in the eye, touched me on my side and walked off.

'It was quite a while - three to five seconds. He smirked at me, he didn't stop he just touched me and walked off and I broke down crying - it was quite traumatic.

'I struggled for a couple of months afterwards, I was applying for Oxford at the time and I found going to Oxford a stressful thing.


'It just makes everything a little bit scarier - if there is a guy walking towards me by himself I start to panic. It was more shocking that someone thought they had the right to touch me as I walked down the street.'

Griffiths, who had been volunteering at a Barnado's charity shop, told the hearing: 'My intention was to make a friend. All my friends had left so I was lonely I just wanted to speak to someone.

'She was walking towards me and I recognised her and I knew that she was a student at the school, I didn't say anything but I really wanted to - the words just didn't come out. I touched her but I believed that it was the arm I was touching.

'I smiled at her, I was just trying to be friendly. I tried to get her attention and she ignored me. Touching someone's arm to get their attention I would have thought was normal. I was looking for a friend.'


Griffiths said he has since signed up to Facebook and Instagram in the hope of making new friends.

He added: 'I would say I'm very anxious and I don't naturally make friends although I really try to.

'When I looked up: 'trying to meet new people' and 'make new friends' one of the things I read was to start off with a joke.

'I have always been a very anxious person, my friends all seem to really know what to do and I never really asked of them how they did it. I have always been more stay at home with my parents and loneliness is all consuming.

'I really needed someone to talk to at the time and my intention was to make a friend - but I clearly didn't go about it the right way and I am sorry for the misunderstanding.

'I tried to speak to her but I just couldn't, my anxiety kicks in and it makes it impossible to say anything. I would hate to make someone feel uncomfortable or scared. Maybe it is time to try to make friends another way.'

His lawyer Claire Aldridge told the court: '[The victim] did say: "I think it would have been on my breast had I not moved", but what she thinks might have happened isn't the issue.

'Are you dealing with somebody lying in wait in broad daylight or are you dealing with an anxious and awkward young man, someone who struggles to make friends by his own admission? He is a particularly shy, anxious young man who spends most of his time studying with his parents.'

But prosecutor Victoria Norman said: ‘He intended to touch her breast area and was waiting for her.’


Noting both approaches took place in ‘isolated areas’, she added: ‘An attempt to make a friendship with anyone surely starts with a hello or a wave.’

Magistrates told Griffiths: 'The complainant's evidence was very clear, logical and without embellishment. We can think of no motivation for you to touch the victim other than sexual.

'Had she not taken evasive action the assault was likely to have been even more serious. The first assault can be recognised as opportunistic however there is more evidence of premeditation in the second.'


----------------------------

Strange story involving two very anxious people. Thoughts on this one?
 

Weiji

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Jul 20, 2018
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Dude sounds creepy as fuck, so I can see where she’s coming from.

But the idea that a court would agree with her and actually convict him of sexual assault for a brief touch is fucking out of this world.

Why wouldn’t you just throw a restraining order on his creepy ass and leave it at that?
 
Aug 29, 2018
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I've long since followed the 'Pence Rule' with regard to underaged people. I am in no way sexually attracted to children, but I'm homosexual so there it is. I suggest my internet friends here on Gaf start thinking in those terms. Today we are all homos.

Also, I would like to reiterate that we need a rage icon for stories like this.
 
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EviLore

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May 30, 2004
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I've long since followed the 'Pence Rule' with regard to underaged people. I am in no way sexually attracted to children, but I'm homosexual so there it is. I suggest my internet friends here on Gaf start thinking in those terms. Today we are all homos.

Also, I would like to reiterate that we need a rage icon for stories like this.
To clarify, they were both above the age of consent at the time of the incident per UK laws and studying at the same high school.
 
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Gargus

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This is why zero tolerance is a bad state of mind.

A judge is supposed to be impartial, unbiased and wise. They should have seen this for what is and responded accordingly to it. I mean its nuts to me because if that kid committed murder he would have had tools to defend himself. Self defense, justifiable homicide, accidental death, etc. He could have defended himself in some way, yet he touches a girl and is tossed in jail. This is a totalitarian society mentality and I guess it's not just the US that's slowly heading down that path.
 

Super Mario

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Nov 12, 2016
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He should know better. He can only do this if she finds him attractive. He can easily find that out by taking a 50/50 shot and either impressing her, or she claims assault because he is "creepy".
 

Joe T.

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Oct 3, 2004
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A maximum of 10 years and registered sex offender for an awkward touch of the arm the "victim" claims could have been her breast had she not moved and her school work suffered because of it? Really? That's not even clown world material, that's just plain hellish.

It just looks like two people that both need help with their social skills. The girl sounds like she might be looking for the most convenient excuse to blame for her stressful time at Oxford.
 

Kenpachii

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So he didn't touch her breast?

Dude should just have countersued her with, i tried to avoid her but she kept always walking the route i walked. Always in isolated area's. one time she walked aggressively towards me and i pushed her away from me then i ran off because i was so confused. The second encounter she went at it again. I didn't tell anybody because i felt ashamed for myself but i couldn't sleep at nights and had trouble making friends after it.

She kept invading my dreams and molesting me, i didn't know what to do. i talked with nobody but i decided to drop it.

Now that we are here, and i clearly didn't want anything to do with her, she tries to put me for some reason in jail because if i can't have her, nobody can.

It's sickening.

snick snick

blablabla
 
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Bogey

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May 4, 2014
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Read this the otehr day and felt horrible for the poor guy.
Yea, I understand the girl felt creeped out if someone behaves quite strange, touches you and just stares at you without saying anything. But after hearing about his background, I can't imagine how she could seriously press on with charges, let alone how any judge in this world could convict the guy.

(Disclaimer: Assuming of course the daily mail hasn't left out any vital details there, it's not exactly a high quality newspaper)

'I think it would have been on my breast had I not moved. When it first happened I didn't think much of it. I forgot about it because I had my exams and just thought it was weird behaviour.'
If he had been blinded by the sun, and a sudden strong gust of wind had swept him closer to me, and if I had as a result lost my balance and stumbled forward, I believe there is at least a 50.1% chance his shoe laces would have touched my erogenous left toe! That monster!
 
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Breakage

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This conviction happened in a country with a culture that increasingly seeks to sexualise its young population, where magazines like this are sold to women:




What the guy did pales in comparison to the stuff that a section of the female population in Britain regularly reads about. The moral confusion in this country is real.
 

kunonabi

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Absolutely insane. This should have a been a total non-event.

Guy acts weird, girl tells school, school talks to him and his parents to stop it.

If his intentions were harmless he'll know better and can start trying to make friends in a more appropriate manner. Everyone wins.

If he continues with it than you can start escalating the discipline.

Jumping to sex offender is irresponsible and ridiculous.
 

Alx

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Eh, I'd rather wait for the final sentence than jump to conclusions based on the dramatic title.
Sure he "faces jail time and sex offender registration", as those must be the maximum punishments for that kind of accusation, but I guess he'll get a slap on the wrist, or maybe some mandated psychological therapy (which wouldn't hurt).
 
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Whitesnake

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Eh, I'd rather wait for the final sentence than jump to conclusions based on the dramatic title.
Sure he "faces jail time and sex offender registration", as those must be the maximum punishments for that kind of accusation, but I guess he'll get a slap on the wrist, or maybe some mandated psychological therapy (which wouldn't hurt).
Being taken to court and accused of sexual assault is a punishment all its own, and one that this """crime""" didn't deserve.
 

Cybrwzrd

Anime waifu panty shots are basically the same thing as paintings of the french baroque masters, if you think about it.
Sep 29, 2014
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This conviction happened in a country with a culture that increasingly seeks to sexualise its young population, where magazines like this are sold to women:




What the guy did pales in comparison to the stuff that a section of the female population in Britain regularly reads about. The moral confusion in this country is real.
British women have an unhealthy obsession with rape.
 

Ivory Blood

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Sep 9, 2018
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This conviction happened in a country with a culture that increasingly seeks to sexualise its young population, where magazines like this are sold to women:




What the guy did pales in comparison to the stuff that a section of the female population in Britain regularly reads about. The moral confusion in this country is real.
We had these kind of magazines here in Russia in the 90's, but they are long gone at this point. WTF phase is UK going through.

As for the topic in question - fuck the judge who ruled that shit, fuck the girl for trying to ruin someones life, and fuck the prosecutor for being a literal piece of shit. This guy is a creepy ass, sure, but sexual assault and 10 years in prison? Fuck that noise.
 

Breakage

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British women have an unhealthy obsession with rape.
Yeah, it's disturbing. If a man said he regularly enjoys and finds comfort Inhorrific stories like the ones featured, people would, rightly, find him strange at the very least. Yet it's become normal for many British women to regularly consume these kind of stories – and no one seems to think that there is anything wrong.

These magazines (and increasingly British TV documentaries which feature stories about murder and sexual abuse ) make misery and abuse seem like the unavoidable norm. They give the impression that all men are awful and having a happy and healthy relationship is rare.

The continued existence of these wretched magazines is a reflection of a deeper cultural problem in Britain.
 
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DeepEnigma

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Yeah, it's disturbing. If a man said he regularly enjoys and finds comfort horrific stories like the ones featured, people would, rightly, find him strange at the very least. Yet it's become normal for many British women to regularly consume these kind of stories – and no one seems to think that there is anything wrong.

These magazines (and increasingly British TV documentaries which feature stories about murder and sexual abuse ) make misery and abuse seem like the unavoidable norm. They give the impression that all men are awful and having a happy and healthy relationship is rare.

The continued existence of these wretched magazines is a reflection of a deeper cultural problem in Britain.
Almost an attempt to normalize, innit?
 

Lamel

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10 years minimum sentence seems a tad bit excessive for something that should be handled by a restraining order or community service.

He certainly violated her space and touched her without permission, but damn if that isn’t a harsh punishment.
 

monegames

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10 years minimum sentence seems a tad bit excessive for something that should be handled by a restraining order or community service.

He certainly violated her space and touched her without permission, but damn if that isn’t a harsh punishment.
Most situations like this one don't even need to go that far. Just say hey don't touch me, and he says ok sorry, the end. I doubt most women give explicit consent to the first arm touch from potential boyfriends, and I doubt those guys ever asked first either.
 

Boss Mog

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I was gonna post this the other day but I never got around to it. The girl saying she's "traumatized" because a guy touched her arm is beyond clown world. And people wonder why guys are now afraid to be alone with women in the workplace and such, all she needs to do is say he touched her arm and he goes to prison for 10 years. Also lets not even mention that 10 years is more than what a lot of murderers get in the UK. The justice system in that country is beyond fucked up.
 

Airola

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Remember the time when Trump kissing a woman on cheek was seen as sexually humiliating her in front of thousands:

God, I still remember feeling embarrassed trying to be as diplomatic as possible there giving as much benefit of the doubt to the people in that thread, and it still pains me to read my posts there trying to please the people on that thread all the while trying to say how awfully wrong they are. But that's how it used to be here. You really had to be extremely careful with your words if you didn't want to get banned, especially in threads about Trump.

I remember that exact topic was the last straw that made me see things were going completely insane. I understood people and the media would never ever be fair to Trump and that things were going in strange and dangerous directions socially.

The news in this thread to me are a direct result from whatever the hell happened to a lot of people a year or two prior to Trump's election and right after his election.
 
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Lamel

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Most situations like this one don't even need to go that far. Just say hey don't touch me, and he says ok sorry, the end. I doubt most women give explicit consent to the first arm touch from potential boyfriends, and I doubt those guys ever asked first either.
I mean yeah I agree, but I doubt “potential boyfriend” was the vibe here lol.
 
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LOLOL.

By the way, I've worked in an office for a good 20 years. And people will give each other hugs, sometimes a pat on the shoulder or back. If everyone is in the kitchen and it's crowded, sometimes people will poke someone to get out of the way, and even funnier purposely cram their way in for fun.

People find out it's your birthday, and you'll get a good 10 women giving you a hug.

How come in 20 years and 100s of people I've interacted with (1,000s if you include the whole office), I've never heard about sexual grabbing incidents or HR going ape shit because every time one of us touches another person, they get a grievance about assault?

I'd say the avg age of an office worker in the places I've worked at is 40-45 years old.
 
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triplestation

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you look at a girl in 2019 you best have a warrant and a lawyer you racist incel fuck

i say we bring back shock therapy to avert young men's minds from sex into more mind stimulating subjects such as art history
 

KINGMOKU

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10 years minimum sentence seems a tad bit excessive for something that should be handled by a restraining order or community service.

He certainly violated her space and touched her without permission, but damn if that isn’t a harsh punishment.
Community service for touching someone?

How does one react to a statement like this?

"Did someone drop you on your head as a child?"

First thing that comes to my mind.
 
Oct 26, 2018
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you look at a girl in 2019 you best have a warrant and a lawyer you racist incel fuck

i say we bring back shock therapy to avert young men's minds from sex into more mind stimulating subjects such as art history
In the Toronto area, the biggest wacko spree in recent memory is a dude got into a moving van a year or two ago and mowed people down on the sidewalk. Killed I think 10 people.

Turns out the guy was an incel loser.
 
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Lamel

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Community service for touching someone?

How does one react to a statement like this?

"Did someone drop you on your head as a child?"

First thing that comes to my mind.
Listen I'm actually saying that the punishment stated in the article is ridiculous. If he did touch her against her wishes repeatedly, then that is wrong, so there is an issue there. I think the punishment is being taken too far though. The guy doesn't deserve to face 10 years in prison and a permanent sex offender status over it.

You know you can't just go up to someone, touch them once, then go ahead and do it again a second time when they are clearly uncomfortable. To be traumatized by it is a bit much, but I can't speak for the girl. In the end this comes down to a "he said she said" in terms of what he was trying to do vs. what she experienced.
 
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Listen I'm actually saying that the punishment stated in the article is ridiculous. If he did touch her against her wishes repeatedly, then that is wrong, so there is an issue there. I think the punishment is being taken too far though. The guy doesn't deserve to face 10 years in prison and a permanent sex offender status over it.

You know you can't just go up to someone, touch them once, then go ahead and do it again a second time when they are clearly uncomfortable. To be traumatized by it is a bit much, but I can't speak for the girl. In the end this comes down to a "he said she said" in terms of what he was trying to do vs. what she experienced.
I wonder this girl does at a store when the cashiers or clerks help them with stuff and give change and the receipt, where hands can touch.

I missed out cashing in.

All the times I bought a suit and you stand in front of the mirror and the clerk helps adjust the suit by touching your shoulders, or gets out a measuring tape to help determine a starting size to try.

I could have sued for illegal touching each time.
 
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Whitesnake

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10 years minimum sentence seems a tad bit excessive for something that should be handled by a restraining order or community service.

He certainly violated her space and touched her without permission, but damn if that isn’t a harsh punishment.
Community service for doing what?