Fort William man placed on sex offenders’ register
A 23-YEAR- OLD Fort William man who admitted sexually assaulting a woman has been placed on the sex offenders’ register and is the subject of a social work report.
Andrew James Farquhar, of 52 Alma Road, Fort William, appeared at the town’s Sheriff Court on Tuesday May 18, where he pled guilty to sexual assault charges which occurred on September 6, 2015.
The court heard how Farquhar, who was 21 at the time of the offence, was a student at the West Highland College in Fort William. He had returned to Fort William on September 5, 2015 to begin the next academic year.
On the night of September 6, Farquhar was drinking with friends and around 1am went to the Basement Nightclub in Fort William.
They returned home around 2.30am, after which one of the friends received a call to say they should have a party at 52 Alma Road. Around 3.45am the victim turned up at the address with two other friends. She was said to have been drinking but, according to a witness, was not drunk.
The property contained one large and one small sofa. The court heard how Farquhar had sat on the small sofa with one of his friends.
When that friend went to bed later, Farquhar and the victim opted to stay up and then went for a cigarette.
When they returned they shared a sofa and sat under a blanket.
The victim was said to have fallen asleep between 8.15am and 8.30am.
When she woke up, she found a ‘strange hand rubbing her stomach and back’.
The fiscal continued she had pretended to be asleep as she was scared what the reaction would be if she appeared to be awake.
She then felt her bra being unclipped, her naked breast being touched and her trouser zip undone. The victim then ran to another room in the property where she told the occupant what had happened. Later that afternoon she went to the police station to report the assault.
The witness approached Farquhar, who appeared to be asleep on the sofa, and told him what the victim had said had happened.
Farquhar told the witness he couldn’t remember anything after having a cigarette outside with the victim. He sent her a Facebook message saying the last thing he could remember was ‘going for a smoke’ and apologised to the victim saying he was shocked to hear what she had said had happened and that it wasn’t like him.
Sheriff Eilidh MacDonald deferred sentencing until August 15, 2017, for a Criminal Justice and Social Work Report and asked for sex offender programmes to be looked into.
She told Farquhar he has been placed on the sex offenders’ register.