Birmingham & Black Country

Birmingham revenge porn victim had strangers arrive at home

Revenge porn victim
Image caption Revenge porn victim Sharon said she felt "destroyed" by her partner's actions

A mother had nude pictures and her address posted on sex websites by her partner, leading to a dozen strangers arriving at her house on one night.

Builder Darren Rowe, 49, took secret images and spread intimate content without her knowledge using a phone connected to a customer's wifi, a West Midlands Police probe found.

The victim said men arrived at her Birmingham home saying they had spoken to her online and been invited.

Rowe received a suspended sentence.

Mother-of-three Sharon, who wanted to protect her full identity, said she felt destroyed by a person she had worshipped.

"You don't expect the man that you love, who says he loves you, to try and destroy you," she said.

'Everything changes'

Rowe, from Rowley Regis, admitted two counts of disclosing private sexual photographs and films with intent to cause distress.

Last month he was given a 12-month jail term, which was suspended for two years, at Wolverhampton Crown Court.

Sharon said she was "disgusted" by what she feels is a lenient punishment.

She initially sobbed on the floor "like a baby" thinking it was all for nothing, but came to feel some sort of closure.

"His name is out there now. Now people know who he is and what he does," she said.

Image copyright West Midlands Police
Image caption Darren Rowe admitted disclosing private sexual photographs with intent to cause distress

Describing the moment she saw herself on various sex sites, Sharon said: "In that second everything changes. The life that you had has gone.

"You've got to get your head around the fact that potentially thousands of people have seen those pictures of you.

"One night 12 men came to the door. I was with my three-month-old baby at the time. Another time someone tried to get in the house."

She said as many as 35 men turned up at her doorstep over a four-month period during the summer of 2017.

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The 39-year-old said her partner had initially convinced her the images had been posted by a friend pretending to be her.

"When police did their investigations I found out it was my partner at the time who had been uploading pictures from a customer's house," she added.

"I wasn't aware he had the pictures or that he'd taken them. He was very, very devious. I didn't have a clue any of these pictures were there."

Sharon, who is no longer with Rowe, has never been given an explanation over his intentions or received an apology.

"The police think he wanted to play the hero, whereas I think he had certain fetishes, which I'm not interested in," she said.

Sharon, a customer service assistant, said she had been unable to take down some of the nude images two years on.

"Only Darren can remove them. He knows what sites they have been uploaded to. The police don't have the authority to do it," she said.

PC Lee Newell, of West Bromwich CID, said it had been a "long and complex case".

"Our investigations revealed that the only person linked to an email address used to transmit the material was in fact Rowe," he said.

"His victim has suffered a distressing onslaught of online abuse."

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