John Allen trial: Witness tells of sexual abuse at care home during Christmas

Published date: 29 October 2014 |

Published by: Staff reporter
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A WITNESS told how he was sexually abused at Christmas at a children’s home when other youngsters had gone home.
The witness, now aged 55, told the trial of care home owner John Allen that he was put into care at the age of nine and was at the Bryn Alyn Home, near Wrexham, in the late 1960s.
One Christmas Eve when he was 14, there were only one or two children left there. He could not go home for Christmas.
The witness said Allen asked him to help lock up the Pentre Saeson home and took him there in the car.
They chatted, he trusted him and regarded him as a father figure.
On Christmas Eve, late at night, he went to bed. But he alleged that a man came into the dorm, turned the light on and got into another of the beds.
He turned around and saw that it was Allen, the witness said.
Allen lit a cigarette and shared it with the boy.
The witness said that he went to sleep but became aware that Allen got into his bed and abused him. 
It was alleged Allen shushed him and said he would be alright.
The witness cried while recalling the events and said he thought he could have got over it. He had tried to block it out.
“I have cried for 30 years. I told him ‘Don’t, I don’t want you to do it’,” he said.
“I didn’t want to be there,” he said, and cried loudly.
“I did not want him to be there. I couldn’t stop him. I could not escape.”
He had not seen Allen for 30 years, “thank God,” he said.
“I still cannot sleep at night. I need closure.”
John McDermott, QC, defending, said when the witness had previously told police about the incident in 1995, he told a different story.
Then he had spoken about one incident when he “got close” to sexually assaulting him.
He alleged then that Allen gave him a glass of wine, gave him a hug, and alleged he had wanted to play strip jack poker.
In a staff bedroom, he was the only child there that night.
He went to sleep and the next thing he realised someone was on the bed and
Allen asked if he wanted a cigarette.
Allen got undressed and slid into bed with him, with one leg in the bed and one out, he said at the time.
The boy said he began shaking, John Allen stopped and as quickly as he got into bed he got out, without anything more happening.
“It is indeed very different,” said Mr McDermott.
The witness said that he did not tell the whole story at the time.
“I just could not do it at the time and backtracked,” he said.
Mr McDermott said Allen denied that any such incident had ever occurred.
Allen, 73, of Foxglove Avenue, Needham Market, near Ipswich, has pleaded not guilty to a total of 40 charges of indecent assault and other sexual offences upon 20 children, 19 boys and one girl, between 1968 and 1991. 

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