A SICK sex pervert who attacked a schoolgirl as her shocked mum looked on in horror has been handed a 16-month jail sentence.
And Christopher Murphy has been warned he will be closely monitored on his eventual release from prison to ensure he doesn’t commit a similar act.
A three-year extended sentence has been put in place so if the attacker steps out of line once liberated, he will be hauled straight back behind bars.
Paisley Sheriff Court last month heard how the schoolgirl’s mum was horrified as Murphy appeared in the street and assaulted her nine-year-old daughter, pinning her against a wall and placing his hands between her legs.
The frantic mother ran at him, grabbed hold of his clothing and bravely tried to detain him until help could arrive.
The 26-year-old, who has recognised psychological problems, managed to break free and take to his heels.
But in the struggle, his jacket was pulled off and when police arrived to investigate, they found personal items in the pockets which led them to the fiend responsible.
When quizzed by cops, he admitted: “I assaulted a girl.”
The court heard how the shocking incident happened in the town’s Greenlaw Avenue, as the woman and her children were walking on the footpath at around 7.15pm on February 24.
The schoolgirl was following her mum a short distance behind her when Murphy appeared from nowhere, put his arm out and pulled her towards a wall, effectively blocking her path.
Depute fiscal Ian Logan told the court: “Her mother looked back and saw him place his hand between her legs and touching her private parts on top of her clothing.
“She confronted him, grabbed hold of him and there was a struggle before he was able to break free and make off.”
Murphy has been remanded in custody after admitting the offence on indictment in court.
Defence agent John McElroy presented a psychological report to show that his client had difficulties which had been identified earlier.
Sentence was deferred for a more detailed assessment and the accused was remanded in custody for reports to be prepared.
When he returned to court to learn his fate, Sheriff Paul Crozier jailed him for sixteen months, reduced from two years due to his early guilty plea, and put a three-year extended sentence in place to act as a deterrent against further offending on his release.
Murphy is prohibited from working with children and his name was also placed on the Sex Offenders Register for 10 years.