A MAN who exposed himself to children and then chased them through woods with no clothes on has been sent to prison.
Chester Crown Court heard that on two occasions during the summer, Paul Roughsedge, 42, of Warren Lane, Hartford, preyed on young children while they were playing on a rope swing in the Hartford Manor Woods.
Simon Medland, prosecuting, said: 'One day between June 20 and June 25, three young girls were playing in the woods at about 6pm when they saw this defendant naked.'
The girls ran home and told their parents what had happened, but a few days later they were confronted by Roughsedge again.
Mr Medland added: 'It was June 26, the same time, the same place, those three girls were at the rope swing again but this time they were with a group of five boys, all aged between 12 and 13.
'One of the girls saw the defendant and he was taking his clothes off, she shouted at him to 'get lost' and asked what he was doing.
'He then said something to the group, although statements were taken from three of the children and their opinions differ as to what exactly he said.'
One of the girls and a boy thought that Roughsedge had made a threat of rape and another girl thought he asked them to go closer.
The group ran off and the defendant followed them with his clothes in one hand.
'The children were very shocked and nervous after their ordeal,' said Mr Medland.
The children ran out of the woods and into the path of a group of joggers, but by this time Roughsedge, who worked at Roberts Bakery in Rudheath, had made his escape.
On July 5, police went to the bakery to arrest him and during police interviews he made partial admissions, but confessed he needed help.
At the hearing on Friday, Roughsedge pleaded guilty to indecency with a child.
Ian Unsworth, defending, said: 'His life has gone off the rails in recent years and he has gone through a divorce.
'He has no previous convictions and is a hard working, quiet man who goes about his own business.'
Judge Elgan Edwards sentenced Roughsedge to 18 months in prison and put him on the sex offenders register for 10 years.