Hindley man jailed for kidnapping and sexually assaulting 16-year-old girl
A 34-year-old man has pleaded guilty to kidnapping and sexually assaulting a 16-year-old girl.
Michael Owen was seen talking to the girl outside a nightclub in Leigh in the early hours of 13 March 2022, and despite her obvious intoxication, he forced her into a taxi and took her back to his home in Hindley.
The teenager was then sexually assaulted by Owen. The assault stopped when the girl’s father started banging on the door.
The court heard that the teenager’s father had become concerned that she wasn’t home and began ringing her.
The phone was answered by the taxi driver, who explained that he had found the phone after taking Owen and the girl to Owen's address. The taxi driver took the girl’s father to the same address.
The police were called, and Owen was arrested. During his police interview, Owen claimed to have been helping the intoxicated teenager, he couldn’t really explain why her trousers had been removed, claiming she must have done it herself.
The CPS worked with Greater Manchester Police to build a strong case to put before the court, including witness testimony and CCTV. Owen initially pleaded not guilty but then changed his plea to guilty on the day of the trial.
Owen was sentenced at Bolton Crown Court to a total of 11 years in prison, including a four-year extension, to be served on licence. He will also be the subject of notification requirements and a Sexual Harm Prevention Order following his custodial sentence.
Gillian Petrovic, Senior Crown Prosecutor for CPS North West, said: “Owen is a sexual predator. In this case, he appeared to be waiting around outside the nightclub and happened across an intoxicated young woman, instead of helping her by calling a taxi for her or even an ambulance, he forced her into a taxi, and despite her saying that she wanted to go home, he took her to his house and sexually assaulted her.
“The CPS successfully applied for the young woman to give her evidence and be cross examined over video link, so her evidence had been pre-recorded ready for the trial. Thanks to the strength of evidence in this case, Owen accepted his guilt on the day of trial.
“I would like to thank the brave teenager for coming forward and speaking about her ordeal. I hope that she can begin to move forward, knowing Owen has been brought to justice for his actions.”
Notes to editors
- Michael Owen: Date of Birth 26/10/1988
- Gillian Petrovic is a Senior Crown Prosecutor for CPS North West’s Rape and Serious Sexual Offence Unit.