Murderer sentenced to 17 years in prison for child sex offences in Stevenage

PUBLISHED: 11:01 22 August 2020 | UPDATED: 11:01 22 August 2020

John Dickinson has been sentenced to 17 years in prison after he was found guilty of eight counts of historic child sex abuse. Picture courtesy of Herts police.

John Dickinson has been sentenced to 17 years in prison after he was found guilty of eight counts of historic child sex abuse. Picture courtesy of Herts police.

Archant

A sex offender has been sentenced to 17 years in prison for repeatedly abusing two children, starting when they were just two and four years old.

John Dickinson, 66, of Kennington Park Road in London, was sentenced at Cambridge Crown Court yesterday for eight offences of sexual abuse committed in Stevenage between 1973 and 1977.

The offences started when the two victims were just two and four years old and came to light in 2017 when one of them disclosed the abuse she had suffered as a young child to the police.

Dickinson was convicted at Cambridge Crown Court on September 12 last year, when a jury found him guilty unanimously, bar one count which was by a 10 to 2 majority.

During the eight-day trial, reference was also made to Dickinson’s previous convictions, including the murder of Susan Lowson in Stevenage in 1980 and subsequent arson at her flat. Dickinson was sentenced to life imprisonment for this crime and was released on licence in 2014.

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In February last year he was arrested by the Metropolitan Police in connection with a firearms offence and recalled back to prison. He has received an additional one-year sentence for this.

Dickinson will be on the sex offenders’ register for life and has also been issued with a sexual harm prevention order.

Investigating officer Fiona Peters, from Hertfordshire Constabulary’s Joint Child Protection Investigation Unit, said: “John Dickinson has finally been punished for these hideous crimes committed against extremely young children.

“Dickinson subjected these children to sustained periods of abuse when they were at a very vulnerable age, betraying their trust in him. They have shown great courage in coming forward and giving evidence in this case, which has secured this conviction. I commend them for their bravery.

“Hertfordshire Constabulary is committed to bringing to justice those who sexually abuse children. I would urge anyone who believes they have been a victim of this type of crime to come forward, no matter how long ago the offences occurred.

“You will be dealt with in confidence, and our dedicated team of officers will investigate your case sensitively and professionally.”


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