Man harassed women

A MAN who intimidated two women on a train journey has been fined.

Ian Bottomley, 49, of Holburn Avenue, Worsley Mesnes, admitted using threatening words and behaviour, causing distress when he appeared at Wigan Magistrates’ Court.

Ms Jayne Kearsley, prosecuting, told the court that on July 4, Bottomley and a male friend got on the train at Hindley station and sat opposite two women – Jennifer Green and Sophie Prior.

Bottomley began an unwanted and lewd conversation with the women and got out his mobile phone and asked for their numbers.

Ms Green put her feet up on the seat opposite her and Bottomley put his hand on her knee. He then asked to shake her hand, which Ms Green agreed to and he touched her knee a second time before she moved her leg away.

As the train pulled up at Wigan station, he kissed both women on the right cheek.

Ms Kearsley said the incident left the women shocked and upset.

The women contacted the police and Bottomley was arrested.

When interviewed, he admitted he had been drinking and his behaviour was inappropriate, but he denied touching the women’s knees and making lewd remarks.

His friend was arrested, but no further action was taken.

Ms Kearsley added that Bottomley committed the offence while on bail for a domestic violence incident and has previous convictions for a public order offence.

Mr Bob Topping, defending, said: “He didn’t mean to upset the women. At no time did they tell him to leave them alone. He was having a conversation, which was reciprocated.

“He accepts he kissed them, but did not do it in a sexual way, as he was saying goodbye. He didn’t think he was doing anything particularly wrong.”

Bottomley was given a conditional discharge for 18 months and was ordered to pay £75 compensation to both women, court costs of £50, plus a £200 fine, consolidated with an outstanding fine of £157.