Now I can move on

Published: 14 Dec 2012 09:30

A Clackmannanshire woman says she is ready to move on with her life after the man who sexually abused her as a child was put behind bars.

Lesleyann Lawrie was abused by Alloa man Joseph Glass when she was between the ages of five and eight.

Now that Glass (62), of Engelen Drive, has been jailed for five years, brave Lesleyann - also of Alloa - feels she is able to leave her trauma in the past.

And she has waived her anonymity to let others know they don't have to suffer alone.

Glass was imprisoned on 16 August

after a trial at Glasgow High Court.

He was also found guilty of carrying out indecent acts on another victim, then aged between three and five, as well as two counts of making threats to kill an individual.

All offences took place between 1 February 1988 and 24 September 1990 in Alloa.

Lesleyann came forward in December 2010. After years battling with what happened, the mum of two decided she was strong enough to speak up - partly because of her concern that it could happen to someone else.

The 30-year-old was also given the courage by becoming a mother herself.

Lesleyann said, "When I was younger I was getting into trouble with the police and self-harming.

"But once I had my oldest it opened my eyes a bit because I thought I couldn't let him see me like this."

Just before Christmas in 2010 she approached the police by way of a letter. They investigated her assertions and court proceedings then got under way.

Now, she feels vindicated and ready to live the rest of her life.

She told the Advertiser, "The day they phoned me to say that he had been jailed I felt like I was on top of the world because somebody believed me, and I had got it

all out."

She now has a lot more self-confidence and can go out to the shop on her own - something she wouldn't have done before.

"I wish I had spoke out sooner than now," she said. "I think people should speak out but it is easier said than done.

"If it's happened to somebody I'd say just speak up. It's not easy to do but just get it out and don't keep it to yourself because it's not easy.

"I thought what if nobody believed me and what if people thought I had made it up."

Now Lesleyann has some closure, "Obviously it's still going to be at the back of my head but you can move on. Now that something's been done I can put it behind me and move on now. After this I have finally realised it wasn't my fault"

Lesleyann now wants to help others stuck in a similar plight - using her own personal experiences by taking on voluntary work to help victims.

She explained, "I thought there was nobody out there who could help me. I'd like to volunteer because of all the help I got when I was speaking to somebody who had gone through the same thing.

"Because it's happened to myself I think I can help others because I think I can understand."

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