Falkirk’s top police officer shared the community’s fears over the threat John Bermingham posed and made sure a watch was placed on the sex offender.
Police Scotland have already been praised for their actions by the mother of one of the little girls Bermingham (52) was accused of trying to abduct – he was released from custody after the case was found not proven and eight days later breached his Sexual Offences Order (SOPO) when surveillance officers caught him engaging in a conversation with a woman.
Bermingham was jailed for three years at Stirling Sheriff Court yesterday, having pled guilty to the breach. Worringly he told the court he was just on the way to a leisure centre.
Officers who arrested Bermingham found him carrying “disguises” – three different hats, two pairs of glasses and a spare jacket.
Falkirk area commander, Chief Inspector Damian Armstrong said: “Due to the professional and prompt actions of officers on observing John Bermingham approaching and talking to a woman in contravention of his Sexual Offences Prevention Order, he was arrested.
“Their actions and early intervention ensured he had no chance to commit further crimes or offences. As Area Commander for Falkirk I understand the strength of community feeling regarding John Bermingham, and the fact he has received a prison sentence at Stirling Sheriff Court will ensure the public feel safer in this regard.”
Now Bermingham is behind bars again, the mother of one of the girls he was accused of trying to abduct told The Falkirk Herald she was “delighted” he was off the streets.
She said: “He committed this offence just a few days after being released from custody. I felt very let down by the justice system after the trial, but now he has finally got what he deserves.
“It’s terrifying thinking of him being out on the streets. The police have been fantastic – I can’t fault them at all. They kept us up top date with everything. The fact they had surveillance on him demonstrates how much of a danger he is.”
Bermingham had been watched by officers ever since he was cleared of attempting to abduct two little girls.
His SOPO banning him from having anything other than “incidental” conversations with women. Bermingham was arrested after engaging a 59-year-old woman in a “strange” chat about a dog.