An elderly man caught naked in a back lane was varnishing his garden gate, a court heard. Michael Charles Shaw appeared for sentence at Furness Magistrates’ Court having previously admitted a charge of indecent exposure. The 76-year-old, of Millom, Cumbria, will be subject to five years of supervision and has had to sign the sex offenders’ register.
The charge relates to an incident on December 16 of last year when Shaw was spotted by a member of the public wearing nothing in a back lane behind his home. Prosecuting, Mrs Pam Ward said Shaw turned round and looked at the man, who initially thought the incident was light hearted. She said: “The witness said he hadn’t expected to see this on a Sunday afternoon while walking his dog. But as he thought about it he realised how serious it was as there are children regularly playing in the street.”
In interview with police, the defendant said he had realised he had been seen but said he had no intention of being spotted. Mrs Ward said: “He said it was dark and after having a shower, he went out to varnish patches of the gate he had started that morning.”
The court heard that he had eight previous convictions of sexual exposure that stretch back as far as December 1970. Mrs Ward said Shaw admitted he got sexual gratification from being nude but not from being seen by others.
Magistrates issued a sexual offences prevention order for five years, stipulating that Shaw is now prohibited from being naked in any part of his property where he could be seen by the public and that he was not to appear in a public place naked or wearing less than one garment of clothing apart from during a medical examination. He was given a 36-month community order, complete with 36 months’ supervision, and will have to sign the sex offenders’ register. He will also face a £150 bill for £85 court costs and a £65 victim surcharge.