Man accused victim of being a paedophile

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A man was given a suspended prison sentence and warned about taking the law into his own hands after sending offensive messages to someone he suspected was a paedophile.

Jack Hempsall (23) left messages on his victim’s Facebook page alleging he was a paedophile and threatening him to get out of a village or be beaten up.

Marie Stace, prosecuting, said the messages were sent between October 11 and October 18.

The first ended: “I will give you a week before I come for you.”

Hempsall again made contact on Facebook, again alleging a child sex offence, and threatened to punch the victim’s head in.

Miss Stace said the victim replied to Hempsall, saying he had reported the messages to police, but Hempsall said he didn’t care and asked the victim to man up and fight him or leave.

The victim was fearful the situation was escalating into a possible face to face confrontation.

Hempsall was interviewed by police.

Miss Stace said: “He was not regretful of sending these messages and felt that his actions were justified.”

Solicitor Rachel Stevens, mitigating, said Hempsall told her: “I have no intention of carrying out any threats to this man.”

The two men had passed one another in the street without incident.

Miss Stevens said the offence arose out of “immaturity and impetuosity”.

Hempsall, of Park Lane, Donington, admitted harassment and was sentenced to 18 weeks prison, suspended for two years, and given a restraining order banning him from contacting the victim. He must pay £40 costs and an £80 victim surcharge.

l The Crown Prosecution Service confirmed this week the victim had no child sex convictions.