A MAN who tricked his way into a woman’s home while posing as a mobile masseur then sexually assaulted her was behind bars last night.

Mark Ormerod was untrained and claimed to have only watched a couple of You Tube videos on the manual therapy.

The Northern Echo:

Mark Ormerod put in pre-planning to enable him to perform massages in women’s homes

His victim was taken in by his online advert, in which he posed as 'Sarah H' offering “full body Swedish massage” in the client’s home.

She was taken aback when a man called at her home to perform the massage, but claiming to be 'Chris', the partner of 'Sarah H', who was unable to fulfil the appointment, he went on to conduct the “unprofessional” massage, which she cut short after he sexually assaulted her.

Ormerod, 44, from Darlington, was traced, despite removing his online advert, and is now starting a four-year prison sentence.

He victim has given up having massages following the ordeal she suffered at his hands.

Although she finds them beneficial as a sufferer from a degenerative condition, she has not had another massage since her experience during Ormerod’s visit, in October, 2016.

The 45-year-old fire service alarm company boss duped his way into the home of the woman, who was expecting a female masseuse for the pre-arranged booking.

Instead, Ormerod turned up claiming to be ‘Chris’ the partner of the masseuse ‘Sarah H’, booked by the client after seeing an online advertisement offering “full body Swedish massage”.

The woman soon had doubts about the credibility of the stand-in, as he brought no massage table, had only baby oil instead of the usual ointments used by professionals, and within moments of the therapy beginning she felt his technique was, “uncomfortable”.

He ignored her request to avoid her stomach area and she recoiled after moved his hand under her knickers having also rubbed her breasts under a towel.

Durham Crown Court heard that she asked him to leave, and reported it to police.

Jane Waugh, prosecuting, said Ormerod kept up a pretence that everything was above board as ‘Sarah H’ messaged the client later saying: “Hope you enjoyed your massage with Chris”.

But the online advert was removed within days and it took police three months to trace the defendant, by “tortuous” examination of messages on his old mobile phone, which he discarded after the incident.

When arrested, at his home in Collingsway, Darlington, he claimed he was considering setting up a mobile massage business in a joint venture with his wife, even though she knew nothing of his plans.

He claimed to have been conducting “market research” and admitted that while having no massage training, he had seen, “a couple of You Tube videos”.

Miss Waugh said Ormerod also claimed the woman “fabricated” her story and said she had grabbed his hand during the massage, moving it beneath her knickers.

He repeated the claim at trial in July, but the jury rejected his account, and returned unanimous guilty verdicts on two counts of sexual assault, denied by Ormerod.

Since the conviction he has undergone psychiatric examination and an interview with the Probation Service in which he still denied committing the offences.

Joanne Kidd, mitigating, said none of his other four clients complained of his actions.

She told the court: “However delusional and bizarre his business enterprise was, it was not set up with the sole motivation of gaining access to women alone, so he could carry out sexual assaults.

“It was an isolated and non-pre-meditated assault, and there is evidence to support that.”

But, jailing him for four years, Judge Christopher Prince told Ormerod: “You engaged in a significant degree of planning to trick your way into a woman’s house, so you could place your hands on her naked body.”

Ormerod must notify as a sex offender and be subject of a Sexual Harm Prevention Order, both “indefinitely”, while a restraining order prohibits him contacting his victim, ”without limit of time”.