Ex-kids’ home head de­nies abus­ing boys

NO-ONE TRIED TO HELP THEM, JURY TOLD

Nottingham Post - - NEWS - By ROD MAL­COLM

A BOYS’ home head abused four chil­dren with­out in­ter­fer­ence from other staff, a jury heard.

Michael Robin­son, now 65, car­ried out as­saults in his pri­vate flat at the Hazel­wood home in Mount Hooton Street, For­est Fields, it was al­leged at Not­ting­ham Crown Court.

Some in­ci­dents took place af­ter he told a boy that “a soap mas­sage would be good for his body”, said Rebecca Her­bert, pros­e­cut­ing.

When the vic­tim ap­peared un­com­fort­able, he was told that he “would be put in an­other home where it would hap­pen any­way.

“The boy didn’t tell any­one about it – he was too afraid,” she said.

Four boys have made al­le­ga­tions against Robin­son, who de­nies 26 charges of in­de­cency dat­ing from the 1980s.

Miss Her­bert said the boys were al­lowed into Robin­son’s apart­ment, where they could play mu­sic and watch TV. One was per­mit­ted to use a bath while Robin­son watched him.

“No-one seems to have been both­ered about the sit­u­a­tion at all. No-one seems to have par­tic­u­larly in­ter­fered with it.

“Michael Robin­son was the boss of Hazel­wood. What Michael Robin­son said at Hazel­wood went at Hazel­wood,” said Miss Her­bert.

One boy said he be­came one of Robin­son’s “favourites” soon af­ter ar­riv­ing at the home. Robin­son, who was of­fi­cer-in-charge, bought him clothes and took him to a pub.

Ev­i­dence was sup­ported by a hand­writ­ten log­book which was kept at the home and was found by po­lice of­fi­cers.

“There are all sorts of en­tries go­ing back decades into what was hap­pen­ing,” said Miss Her­bert.

The four chil­dren all had sim­i­lar hair colours, which sug­gested they were “the type of young boy he liked”.

On oc­ca­sions, Robin­son pre­tended to be an­gry and spanked one of the boys, who be­gan to cry. When this hap­pened, Robin­son ap­peared to get up­set and “then started to cud­dle him”, said Miss Her­bert.

Other abuse took place when Robin­son was al­leged to have given whisky to a boy who kept quiet about the in­ci­dents for 30 years.

Robin­son is also ac­cused of per­suad­ing a boy to un­dress and then tak­ing pho­to­graphs us­ing a Po­laroid cam­era, which pro­duced pic­tures within sec­onds.

An­other boy told po­lice that Robin­son made him stand blind­fold while he was be­ing touched.

Miss Her­bert said the boy of­ten dodged school and Robin­son had “one to one chats” with him.

The trial con­tin­ues on Mon­day.

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