A 48-year-old man has been found guilty of multiple counts of child sexual offences.
Paul Andrew Degenhart has been on trial at Sheffield Crown Court since Monday 5 October charged with 34 counts of child sexual offences, including 20 counts of indecent assault, seven counts of indecency with a child and four counts of rape.
Today, after three days of deliberations, a jury found Degenhart guilty of 33 offences – 20 counts of indecent assault, six counts of indecency with a child, four counts of rape, two counts of buggery and one count of attempted rape.
The court heard how Degenhart, formerly of Raeburn Road, Sheffield, sexually abused four children in Sheffield in the 1980s and 1990s.
Detective Constable Helen Barrett, who led the investigation into Degenhart’s crimes, said: “I wish to firstly commend the victims in this case, who have each demonstrated tremendous bravery in relaying to the police details of their horrific sexual abuse.
“Degenhart refused to accept responsibility for his crimes, meaning those victims have also had to recount before a jury the awful things that were done to them as children. They carried themselves with dignity and were very courageous throughout this process.
“The jury has seen fit to return guilty verdicts on Degenhart’s awful crimes today, such was the strength of the victims’ evidence put before the court. He groomed and abused his victims, repeatedly subjecting them to sexual violence and threatening them not to tell anyone.
“Degenhart has been convicted of serious sexual offences and I hope the victims are able to take some sense of closure and justice from this.”
Degenhart has been remanded in custody and will be sentenced at Sheffield Crown Court on Wednesday 18 November.