THE UNCONTROLABLE URGES OF THE SHOE FETISHIST

A shoe fetishist who sexually assaulted a string of women because he was turned on by their footwear was caged for nine months.

Paul Chigbu, 43, pounced on his latest victim, a 25-year-old in knee-high black leather boots as she shopped with her family.

His previous record features similar incidents in which he has alarmed women by fondling or commenting on their boots in the street or on public transport.

Inner London Crown Court heard how on the evening of September 19, last year, he sexually assaulted the boot wearing office manager.

She was walking down Clapham High Street, Clapham, southwest London, with her parents when Chigbu ‘appeared out of nowhere’.

The victim added: ‘He was standing up but bent down and grabbed my boot.

‘He was kind of smirking, but didn’t say anything. He grabbed my leg just below the knee, then my shoulder.’

She described being ‘spooked out’ but just brushed off Chigbu as a weirdo and the family went to dinner.

But when they saw him twice more during the evening, believing he may be stalking her, they alerted police.

Chigbu was arrested at the scene.

His sex offending dates to 1984 and resumed in December 2003 when he walked up and spanked a woman on the bottom while visiting a relative in hospital.

In June 2007 he jumped on the back of a woman dancer performing at a festival in Camberwell Green.

He tried to fondle a woman’s shoe at a bus stop in January 2009.

I October 2009 while on a train, he rubbed a fashion student’s knee, lower leg, and her knee-high boots.

He was jailed for eight months for the attack in which he grabbed the teenager as she chatted on her mobile phone and told her: ‘I like your legs.’

The 17-year-old had boarded the train home to Hayes, Kent, after finishing a shift at Selfridges department store in central London.

Chigbu walked past the teenager, who was wearing leggings with the alluring boots, and then stood in front of her while swigging from a can of beer.

She said: ‘I was sitting on the train talking to my friend on the phone.

‘I saw the male come past me on the right hand side. He stopped in front of me and blocked me.

‘He was just smirking. Then he got his right hand and grabbed my inner left thigh and said “I like your legs”.’

‘I shouted “Get off me” and barged past him and got off the train.’

She alerted two police officers and picked out Chigbu while the train was stopped at Charing Cross Station.

He became aggressive and violent when he was arrested kicking out at officers and spitting in the face of a special constable.

In police interview, Chigbu told officers he admired the girl’s boots and thought he might buy a similar pair for his girlfriend.

Other women have made complaints about him fondling thei shoes cashpoint and in a branch of Marks & Spencer.

Chigbu, formerly of Rutland Place, Catford, denied sexual assault and was convicted by a jury.

His 34 previous convictions includes an assault occasioning actual bodily harm, common assault, assault on police, harassment, robbery, affray, disorderly behaviour, battery and using threatening or insulting words or behaviour.

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