Ex-policeman James Ainsworth jailed for child sex abuse
A former policeman who sexually abused four girls and two boys over a 25-year period been jailed for 11 years.
James Ainsworth, 62, pleaded guilty to seven charges of sexual abuse and one of rape.
The High Court in Glasgow heard that Ainsworth told two of his female victims: "I'm a police officer, no-one will believe you."
The offences were committed in Ayrshire and Dumfriesshire between 1965 and 1990.
Ainsworth admitted the offences as a second trial against him was about to start. The first trial had to be abandoned after he was assaulted outside court.
Jailing Ainsworth, judge Norman Ritchie QC said: "You have admitted the wrong you did.
"I was going to sentence you to 12 years, but I'm prepared to give you a discount of a year as there was no need to the victims to testify for a second time."
Defence QC Andrew Lamb said: "Mr Ainsworth had some difficulty in coming to terms with the offences. His pleas of guilty and acceptance of his own behaviour had the result that the victims did not have to give evidence for a second time."
Advocate depute Kath Harper, prosecuting, said that Ainsworth's predatory sexual behaviour began when he was just 14.
He began abusing one girl when she was eight years old and raped her once when she was aged between eight and nine.
Referring to the rape, Miss Harper said: "The girl did not understand what was happening to her as she had not yet had sex education. She felt guilty and ashamed and felt that what had happened was her own fault."
The court heard that Ainsworth also sexually abused three other girls - one of them in the police house in Ayrshire where he was stationed.
One of the girls was so traumatised after being assaulted that she cleaned her teeth with powdered Vim.
Ainsworth told the girl, who was aged six: "No-one will believe you. I am a police officer and something bad will happen to your mum."
Judge Ritchie also placed the Ainsworth on the sex offenders' register.