Glasgow & West Scotland

Babysitter admits historical abuse

William Williamson Image copyright Watchtower Media

A babysitter who sexually assaulted a girl over four years told police the victim had enjoyed the abuse.

William Williamson, 87, from Houston, Renfrewshire, admitted indecently assaulting the child, who was seven years old when the abuse began in 2004.

Paisley Sheriff Court heard Williamson had played a "tickling game" which would escalate into a sex act.

Sheriff David Pender deferred sentence until next month and placed Williamson on the sex offenders register.

The court heard Williamson, who now suffers from mild dementia and has hearing problems, had looked after the girl once a week after school.

Left traumatised

Procurator Fiscal Depute Keri Marshall said Williamson targeted the girl while his wife was in another room making dinner.

The prosecutor said: "On Wednesdays after school she would sit on the couch in the living room.

"The accused would sit down on the couch and tell her they were going to play a game with tickling and cuddles."

She added: "She remembered it was sore and said this game would stop only when [his wife] shouted them through for dinner."

The court was told the sexual attacks, which stopped when she was 10, left her so traumatised that she began to self harm when she was 14.

'Lack of empathy'

It was another eight years before she was aable to tell police what had happened.

When Williamson was detained for questioning, he told officers that the girl had been "totally at ease with the whole thing".

He had said: "It was something she actually enjoyed - I thought so anyway."

Defence solicitor Jonathan Manson opted to reserve his full plea in mitigation until the next occasion, saying that Williamson showed "a complete lack of empathy - he fails to understand the position of trust he was in".