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The York Press
Megi Rychlikova, Court ReporterSelby child abuser Jason Clive Smith is locked away (From York Press)
A Selby child abuser who gave his 15-year-old victim the drug M-cat as he subjected her to two sexual assaults has been jailed for four years.
Former soldier Jason Clive Smith, 32, persuaded a friend to lie to police in a bid to escape justice for his sex crimes, York Crown Court was told.
The drug, also known as mephedrone, was legal when he abused the 15-year-old girl in his bathroom while her friend waited downstairs.
The Press has successfully campaigned for the drug to be made illegal. When Smith heard police were hunting for him, he sent David Robert Duane Rhodes instructions to give a false story to officers to help him.
Rhodes did as Smith asked and gave a lying statement to police. He was jailed for nine months.
“In the end you are the person who signed the statement and you are the person who told lies to police,” Judge Colin Burn told Rhodes.
Smith, of Milton Place, Selby, and Rhodes, 23, of Meadow View, Sherburn-in-Elmet, both admitted perverting the course of justice. Smith also admitted two charges of sexual activity with a child under 16 years old on the basis that she had shown sexual interest in him.
Prosecutor Adrian Strong said the girl had difficulties with her mother and had self-harmed before she and her friend went to Smith’s home earlier this year.
Since then she had had nightmares and sleep problems and blamed herself for what had happened.
Police mounted an intensive hunt for Smith until he voluntarily surrendered to them seven days after the abuse.
On his way to the police station, he left a message on a friend’s phone, telling her to pass it on to Rhodes. After she did so, the friend spoke out and police heard about the message. They seized the phone and found the recording.
Rhodes told police he didn’t believe the girl had been raped and Smith was his friend.
Taryn Turner, for Smith, said the 15-year-old had gone willingly to Smith’s house. Smith had panicked when he heard the police suspected him of raping the girl, so he had sent the message.
The defence barrister said there was a job waiting for Smith from a previous employer when he was released from jail.
For Rhodes, David Bradshaw said his client felt he “owed” it to Smith to help him out. He had health problems and was for a time on anti-depressants.