Northumberland man cleared of sexual-assault charges

Latest court news.
Latest court news.

A north Northumberland man who stood trial after being accused of sexually assaulting teenage girls at parties has been cleared of all the charges.

Mark Richard Griffiths, 55, of Cow Road, Spittal, Berwick, had pleaded not guilty to four counts of sexual assault – three of assault by touching and one of assault by penetration with his fingers.

The trial took place at Newcastle Crown Court last week and the charges related to four different girls, who cannot be identified for legal reasons and were aged 16 and 17 at the time. The allegations arose after parties at the defendant’s house in January this year and August 2014.

However, last Wednesday – day three of the trial – the prosecution decided not to proceed with the third count – of sexual assault by touching. And on Friday, he was found not guilty of the three remaining charges.