Naked trampoline man avoids jail sentence

James Burden. Pic by CSNA James Burden has avoided a jail sentence

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A man caught jumping up and down naked on a trampoline has avoided a jail sentence.

James Burden, 55, was spotted by a neighbour in the garden of his Falkirk home at 0500 GMT on 25 March.

Falkirk Sheriff Court heard Burden had his "manhood" in one hand and a cigarette in the other when the neighbour saw him.

She called the police, and Burden was arrested and charged with shameless indecency.

Mike McMahon, prosecuting, said: "He told police he had gone out to the trampoline and had masturbated himself there."

Asked why he did it, Burden told officers: "Just for the thrill of it."

Start Quote

I have read the reports and you will be provided with the support that you need, and it is essential the community is not faced with this sort of behaviour again”

End Quote Sheriff William Gallacher Falkirk Sheriif Court

Asked why he looked at his neighbour's window, he said: "Because I had seen the light go on."

He added: "I did not intend anyone to see me."

Burden pleaded guilty to a single charge of publicly exposing his person in a shameless and indecent manner, and approaching his neighbour's house and placing the occupant in a state of fear and alarm.

He appeared for sentencing at Falkirk Sheriff Court earlier this month but attempted to withdraw his plea.

Gordon Addison, defending, said his client now claimed to have "only pled guilty to avoid the embarrassment of a trial".

Sheriff Caldwell refused to allow Burden to withdraw his guilty plea, saying he had confirmed it in court after months of legal advice, and placed him on the sex offenders register.

At the court appearance on Thursday, Sheriff William Gallacher put Burden on probation for a period of three years, and warned if he did not comply with the order, he may be "removed from the community".

He said: "I have read the reports and you will be provided with the support that you need, and it is essential the community is not faced with this sort of behaviour again.

"Breach the probation in any way and you may be removed from the community."

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