Thursday 23 November 2017

Ex-player: 'I wanted to kill the man that abused me'

Derek Bell said he was groomed and abused between the ages of 12 and 16
Derek Bell said he was groomed and abused between the ages of 12 and 16

Former Newcastle footballer Derek Bell has said he wanted to kill the man that sexually abused him as a young boy.

Bell said he was groomed and abused between the ages of 12 and 16 by his coach George Ormond while playing for Montagu and North Fenham boys football club during the 1970s.

After injury curtailed his senior career, Bell later encountered Ormond again while working for Newcastle city council's housing department.

Bell spotted Ormond hiding behind a tree in the grounds of a youth hostel used to house vulnerable refugee teenagers.

"I have lived hell for years," Bell told BBC Radio 5 Live. "And this (seeing Ormond) just blew my head. So after that, I went home, and talked about it.

"And I was going to kill the guy. I thought, no, I can't live any more, everywhere I seem to go he's there... This brought back all the memories to the forefront of my head, and I wanted to kill the guy.

"I went to his house with a 12-inch knife hidden in my pocket and I kicked his door in. Luckily for him, that evening, he wasn't in. I went round his house and he wasn't there."

Bell then resolved to bring Ormond to justice by secretly recording him on tape. "I went to his house a couple of days later, on a Sunday morning, early morning 8 o'clock. Knocked on his door, had a tape recorder in my pocket, and I just asked him the questions - why, why, why, what was his motivation to find a need to constantly abuse me, threaten me, bribe me, befriend my family? All them sort of questions.

"And not one time did he say he was sorry. He just said: 'I don't know why'. His main aim was, 'you're not going to tell the police are you?'" After more than 20 years coaching at Montagu and North Fenham boys football club, Ormond took a job with Newcastle in the 1990s and was involved in the youth set-up there for around three years.

Ormond was convicted of indecent assaults in 2002 and sentenced to six years in prison.

Bell said: "It's not about me. It's about raising awareness for victims. I've been through the court system so (I want to) help any victims come forward and also to give support to victims who do come forward.

"Be brave, don't be ashamed. Don't live in silence."

North Yorkshire and North Wales police are the latest forces to confirm they are probing allegations of historical child sex abuse in football - taking the tally to 11.

So far police have received 250 reports and more than 50 calls were made to an NSPCC hotline set up for sexual abuse victims in football in the initial hours of opening.

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