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Abuse made girl feel like freak

PUBLISHED: 21:14 08 September 2002 | UPDATED: 12:36 03 March 2010

A 14-year-old girl has today told an Ipswich court that she felt like a "freak" after she was sexually abused.

The schoolgirl was aged between nine and 11 when she was allegedly indecently touched and asked to perform sexual acts by Steven Hawkins.

A 14-year-old girl has today told an Ipswich court that she felt like a "freak" after she was sexually abused.

The schoolgirl was aged between nine and 11 when she was allegedly indecently touched and asked to perform sexual acts by Steven Hawkins.

She cannot be named for legal reasons.

The 43-year-old accused, of Feltwell Place, Haverhill, denies two specimen charges of indecent assault and two charges of gross indecency.

The teenager told the court: "I felt like a freak when I realised things were not normal".

When it was suggested that she made the allegations the girl said: "It did happen, I have lived with it these past years. I know it happened."

She added: "Up until a couple of years ago I did not realise this happens to other children, and I realised it was wrong and I felt sick and disgusted. It frightened me when it happened but I did not know it was wrong.

"I did not cry, I did not make a noise, I was too frightened. But when I got home I asked mum if I could have a bath because I wanted to wash it off and make it go away."

The court heard how the girl had eventually confided in a schoolfriend, who said she had been sexually abused by her grandfather.

"It hit me really hard when I realised that I was not the only person this happens to," she said.

The school friend advised her to tell an adult so the girl told her mother.

"I was very muddled up that day - everything was spinning, it still is," the girl said.

The girl added she had been given plenty of opportunities to withdraw the allegations before the police were called.

"The easy option would have been to back out, my mum was getting ill and it caused family problems. But I thought if I did not say something he could do it to another child. I knew my mum believed me, but she did not want it to be, if you know what I mean? She did not want that sort of thing to happen to me, her daughter."

Hawkins is accused of touching the girl's private parts over her knickers and trying to have oral sex with her.

He is also alleged to have encouraged her to touch him sexually and to perform oral sex on him.

The trial continues.

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