Edinburgh, Fife & East Scotland

Care worker jailed over sex attacks on disabled man in Fife

Steven Watson Image copyright Police Scotland
Image caption Steven Watson carried out the attacks while employed as a support worker

A care worker has been jailed for six years and four months for repeatedly raping a profoundly disabled man at a Fife residential home.

Steven Watson, 64, attacked the 44-year-old, who cannot live independently and requires 24-hour care, while employed as a support worker.

Watson admitted assaulting and raping the man three times between 1 December 2018 and 6 January this year.

Judge Lord Beckett said it was a "dreadful crime".

He said it had been a "gross breach of trust" of a man who was unable to consent and unable to physically resist.

Support worker

At the High Court in Edinburgh, Lord Beckett said Watson would have been jailed for nine years if he had not pleaded guilty.

He was also placed on the sex offenders register indefinitely.

The former foreign aid worker, from Dunfermline, had previously been employed overseas with charities such as Oxfam and Save the Children.

Advocate Depute Jane Farquharson QC said Watson had been a support worker for 15 to 20 years.

Requires assistance

"It is employment that saw the accused caring for some of the most vulnerable members of society, many of whom, including the complainer, have limited communication and mobility skills," she said.

She said Watson's victim had a number of conditions, including cerebral palsy, epilepsy and severe learning difficulties, and used a wheelchair.

Ms Farquharson added: "He cannot do anything for himself and requires assistance in all aspects of his daily living.

"He can express himself, using yes and no answers, head movements, and through the use of visual communication aids but only if asked a simple and closed question."

Defence solicitor advocate Gordon Martin said Watson regretted his actions but still could not explain them.

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