An inmate who sexually assaulted and exposed himself to four female officers at a Doncaster prison in the space of 11 days has been sentenced to a hospital order.
Lee Ward, 31, carried out the first sex offence on February 10 last year, when he sexually assaulted a female prison officer who was called into his cell.
“She was very upset about it. It was very unexpected. It’s affected her ability and confidence to carry on at work,” prosecutor, Alison O’ Shea, told Sheffield Crown Court.
Ward carried out the second sex assault on a Doncaster prison officer two days later on February 12, when officers were called into his cell after receiving reports that he had been self-harming.
“You had self-harmed in order to get these officers to come to you. When she tried to restrain you, you touched her,” said Judge Rachael Harrison.
Later that week, a third female officer was called to Ward’s cell. When she arrived at his cell, he performed a solo sex act, and was laughing throughout, the court heard.
Ward repeated the behaviour when a fourth female officer was called to his cell on February 21 last year.
In statements given to the court, the four victims, none of whom can be named for legal reasons, described how Ward’s behaviour had deeply affected them and made them feel ‘dirty’.
Ward pleaded guilty to offences of sexual assault and exposure at an earlier hearing.
Ms O’Shea told the court that Ward has previously been convicted of exposing himself and performing solo sex acts in front of women in the street and at a park.
Consultant forensic psychiatrist, Dr Nicholas Taylor, gave evidence at court and said Ward suffers from hebephrenic schizophrenia, and has been receiving treatment for his condition at the Arnold Lodge mental health facility in Leicester.
Dr Taylor said Ward’s behaviour had begun to improve since being moved to the facility and receiving the correct medication for his condition.
Judge Harrison asked Dr Taylor whether sentencing Ward to a hybrid hospital order, that would see him detained at a mental health hospital before being moved to a prison, would be the best course of action.
Dr Taylor said: “If he were not detained at the hospital I think it’s likely that he would stop treatment involving medication. His mental health would decline, and he would present a risk to others.”
Judge Harrison sentenced Ward to a hospital order under Section 37 of the Mental Health Act 1983.
She also made Ward the subject of a Section 41 restriction order, which means he can only be discharged if permission is granted by the Secretary of State, due to the risk he poses to the public.
She said: “It’s necessary to the protect the public from serious harm, and I’m of the view you pose a serious risk of harm to the public if you are at liberty and you are not on medication.”