A TEENAGER who has been sentenced over four child sex offences is ‘not really a sex offender’, according to his solicitor.

Ethan George Wells, 19, appeared before Weymouth Magistrates Court on Thursday, March 9 where he was issued a fine of £20 and given a community order.

He had previously admitted three counts of causing or inciting a girl between the age of 13 and 15 to enage sexual activity and one count of possessing an indecent image of a child.

The three counts of ‘inciting sexual activity’ relate to a course of conduct between June 27 and July 2 in 2021 - when Wells was 17.

Wells, of Forum View in Bryanston near Blandford, is charged with causing his victim, 14, to take photos of her naked body having ‘repeatedly’ asked the girl for naked photos of herself and told her she would ‘die’ if she didn’t do so. The court was told he had told the girl he would ‘be her boyfriend’ if she sent the images.

Mr Graham, representing Wells, said the probation service had established his client to have a ‘learning age’ of around nine-years-old and that he should ‘effectively be sentenced as though he was nine or ten years of age’.

As previously reported, in one of the exchanges, Wells told the 14-year-old: “I won’t ask again. If you don’t do it now you will die.”

He also admitted one charge of possessing an indecent image of a child - relating to a separate 16-year-old victim. The category C image found after a forensic examination of Wells’ mobile phone was a topless photograph of the girl.

The court heard the offences came to light during a separate investigation where Wells was ultimately convicted of stalking an ex-girlfriend.

In December 2021 Wells admitted stalking an ex-girlfriend and threatening to burn her house down.

Mr Graham said that the defendant had been diagnosed with autism and ADHD and that, at the time of offences, he had no previous convictions. Mr Graham said had the current charges been dealt with at the time of Wells’ conviction for harassing an ex-girlfriend that the original sentence would likely have only been a longer community order.

Mr Graham added: “Young people that commit sex offences are not really sex offenders."

Magistrate Leonard Vickery told the defendant: “We want to try and help you as much as we can. We are trying to set up a plan that will help you address your issues. You have marvellous support from your family.”

He added that the court was ‘disappointed’ the case had taken so long to come before court.

Wells has been made subject to a 12 month community order and is required to complete 30 rehabilitation activity requirement days. He was fined £20.