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Tuesday, 16 September 2014

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Cumbria man's Facebook messages to girl said he wanted to go to bed with her - court

A man accused of sexually assaulting a schoolgirl sent her internet messages saying he wanted to go to bed with her, a jury heard.

Related: Cumbrian girl feared being abused while babysitting

And when the girl reminded him she was less than half his age, 35-year-old Kevin Swindle told her she was “still hot”.

Details of the Facebook messages Swindle sent to the girl emerged during his trial at Carlisle Crown Court, where he has denied nine charges of sexually assaulting her.

Swindle, of Vicarage Terrace, Alston, has pleaded not guilty to three charges of sexually touching the girl when she was 14, and three more of doing it when she was 15.

He has also denied three charges of sexually assaulting her after she had turned 16.

The prosecution claims the messages “clearly indicated” Swindle wanted to start a sexual relationship with the girl, whom he is alleged to have first groped when she was just 14.

But in evidence yesterday one of his women friends said such comments were just the sort of “banter” he was known for. Kay Cuthbert, 23, who used to work in the Swan’s Head in Alston, where Swindle was a regular darts player, described him as “friendly, open, honest and reliable.”

Of the Facebook messages in which he said he wanted to share the girl’s bed, she said: “It’s just the kind of thing he would say to people in this type of situation. It’s part of his sense of humour.”

A verdict in the case is expected today.

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