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Young boxer avoids jail over abuse of teen
A PROMISING young boxer has avoided jail for making indecent images of children and abusing a teenage girl.
Clinton Townsend, of Field Assarts, near Leafield, boasted of having convinced girls to send him hundreds of nude pictures of themselves, Oxford Crown Court heard.
The 19-year-old, who was a successful member of the Oxford Boxing Academy, showed the images to his school friends.
Kate Mallison, prosecuting, said his peer group had found the pictures “funny” and when arrested in 2011 Townsend had maintained they were of girls his own age.
But he eventually admitted manipulating several younger teenagers into taking and sending him indecent images.
And during the summer of 2011, while on police bail following his arrest, he sexually abused a 13-year-old girl.
Peter Du Feu, defending, said Townsend thought he was “invulnerable” when growing up but had completely changed since his crimes.
He said: “At 17 he thought it was all innocent and all a big laugh, but he has had two years to reflect on that.
“He has undergone a real sea change in his personality, from being cock of the walk to something very different.
“Mr Townsend was a good-looking lad who was an England youth level boxer who was able to attract the girls.
“Now he has become quite withdrawn and doesn’t go out.”
When he was 15 Townsend had a week’s expert tuition with world champion boxer Nicky Cook and was a Home Counties age-group champion.
In January 2011, when he was 17, he was arrested on suspicion of having indecent images of children on his laptop and mobile phone.
Judge Christopher Compston sentenced Townsend to 12 months in prison, suspended for two years, for two counts of sexual activity with a child.
He also gave him a five-month suspended sentence for five counts of making a total of 40 indecent images of children, to run at the same time as the other sentence.
Judge Compston said: “I have no doubt that at the time some of these offences were committed you and your mates thought it was okay.
“You had no regard to the damage you must have been causing to those girls. When you have daughters you will think very differently.
“I have no doubt if you come back to this court, I or any other judge will say ‘that’s it’ and send you straight to prison.”
Townsend was also given a sexual offences prevention order that bars him from having any unsupervised contact with girls under 18 or using a computer without police permission.