Policeman cleared of sexual assaults at Fife wedding
A police officer has been found not guilty of sexually assaulting a schoolboy and an adult male at a wedding in Fife.
This was despite a sheriff accepting the evidence of the 15-year-old boy that Craig Heron had groped him and grabbed his penis in a field at the open air reception.
The sheriff rejected the claims of the second alleged victim and the case involving the boy failed because of lack of corroboration.
Heron (34), a police sergeant from Falkirk, was cleared after a five-day trial at Dunfermline Sheriff Court.
The allegations followed a wedding reception which took place at Balgownie Smithy, Culross, on 17th June last year.
Heron was accused of sexually assaulting a 15-year-old boy by placing his arm around his body, repeatedly touching his genitals over his clothing, seizing his penis, touching and rubbing his body under his clothing.
It was also alleged he sexually assaulted a man aged in his late twenties by repeatedly touching his genitals over his clothing.
Sheriff Charles MacNair said of schoolboy’s evidence, “I’m satisfied that he was telling the truth about this allegation.”
However, the sheriff did not accept the evidence of the second complainer saying it was “inconceivable” that he would have been posing for photos with the accused after the alleged sexual assault took place.
Heron, who had been at the wedding with his wife, told the court both the boy and the other male had been telling lies.
Depute fiscal Dev Kapadia asked Heron about the schoolboy’s evidence: “Is he simply making it up?”
“Absolutely he is. Alcohol may have been a factor,” said father-of-one Heron.
Earlier in the trial, which has taken several months to complete and was subject to reporting restrictions until the verdict, the schoolboy gave his version of what had happened.
He said he did not know Heron before the wedding but had been sitting in his company at a table with others.
Later, he said Heron had asked him to go to the toilet with him and he had done so. “I thought it was slightly weird. I trusted him because I knew what his job was.
“He said, ‘It’s noisy, do you want to go over here so I hear you better.’
The boy said they had then gone to an area away from the other guests.
“It went through my mind that if I shouted nobody would hear me. He was very edgy looking around. He put his arm around me and starting touching me,” said the boy.
“His hand came around towards my penis. He was grabbing, kind of squeezing. I was trying to move away. I was really scared and didn’t know what to do.”
Asked about he felt during the incident, he said, “I was terrified. I didn’t know how to react. I was thinking: should I tell somebody or should I not.”
He told a female guest about what had taken place and the police were eventually called and detained Heron at the party.
Sheriff MacNair said, “In my view it’s only if I accept both complainers can I convict in this case.” He found Heron not guilty.