A Ballymena woman who admitted two counts of sexually molesting a teenage school girl walked free from court on Monday after she agreed to spend a year on probation.
Freeing 22-year-old Danielle Millar at Antrim Crown Court, Judge Desmond Marrinan described it was a “difficult case” but that he was convinced it was one where “justice should be tempered with mercy.”
The judge told a crying Millar that given the contents of the various reports compiled on her, all of which contained “matters of personal delicacy” which he did not wish to open in a public court, “I consider that no good would come of subjecting this young person to a period in custody.”
Last March Millar, from Church Street in Ahoghill, entered guilty pleas to two counts of sexual activity involving penetration with a child under 16 on a date unknown between 1 January and 1 July 2012 while a third similar count was not proceeded with.
During an earlier court hearing, prosecuting QC Neil Connor described how Millar’s victim was just 14-years-old when Millar engaged in inappropriate touching on two occasions.
The girls had gotten to know each other through a mutual social circle and the separate offences happened in the victim’s bedroom.
Millar was arrested and interviewed when the schoolgirl told her parents and she admitted she knew what had happened was wrong.
During his sentencing remarks today (mon), Judge Marrinan said it was clear from the victim impact statement that her victim had suffered adverse effects from what had happened but that it appeared she was, thankfully, trying to get on with her life.
“I am not dealing with some cynical criminal who has behaved in a ruthless way to take advantage on a young person,” said Judge Marrinan adding that Millar had made “Herculean efforts” to get her life back on track.
As well as the probation order, Millar was ordered to stay on the police sex offenders register for five years and to comply with a five year Sexual Offences Prevention Order.