A young woman, who was spied upon in the bathroom by her stepfather, said she is still suffering from his abuse of trust.
The teenager exposed pervert David Cosgrove after filming him as he peered through a hole in the door, trying to watch her taking a bath.
Hannah was 16 years old at the time but initially did not tell her mother, fearing the effect it would have on the family.
However, after speaking to a university psychologist, she decided to waive her right to anonymity to let others know what Cosgrove had done at their family home in Dalgety Bay.
Hannah, now 19 and studying in the USA, wanted to highlight Cosgrove’s sick behaviour and the ongoing damage it has caused to her.
‘Justice not served’
Dunfermline Sheriff Court heard in September how Cosgrove removed the bathroom door lock to create a peephole.
Suspicious Hannah filmed him as he crouched down to watch her.
Cosgrove, 48, was sentenced to unpaid work and Hannah feels let down by the justice system.
She said, “When I first heard the sentence, I was extremely disappointed.
“He only gets 165 hours of unpaid work throughout a year, when I’m left to grapple with his disgusting actions for the rest of my life.
“Justice has not been served.
“The system has not only let me down but every other person with horrible cases like this.”
Hannah said Cosgrove had been the “paternal figure” throughout her childhood, from the age of four, and she called him “Dad”.
She said: “A discernible shift in David Cosgrove’s behaviour towards me emerged around the year 2017, when I was aged 13.
“I began to experience discomfort in his presence.
“At the time, youth and nervousness led me to rationalise these incidents as inconsequential.
“The year 2020, when I was aged 16, marked a turning point – lockdown meant prolonged periods of shared confinement within our home.”
She said Cosgrove “persisted in entering the bathroom” while she was there.
“This pattern became so recurrent that, in anticipation of his approach, I felt compelled to record these intrusions on my mobile device, subsequently sharing them with my confidante, who unequivocally affirmed the impropriety of these actions.”
She said she gained “visual evidence of David Cosgrove’s voyeuristic behaviour” on April 2 2020.
“As I started undressing, a disconcerting sensation of being observed overcame me.
“David Cosgrove had previously removed the bathroom lock, leaving a small hole in the door.
“I positioned my mobile camera against the opening in the door, capturing his deliberate act of intrusion to purposefully watch me undress.
“While this incident constitutes the sole tangible physical evidence I possess, it does not represent an isolated occurrence.”
‘I was a child… taken advantage of’
She explained why she has now spoken out against the man she labels a “sexual predator”.
“At the time, I was at an age where I recognised that his actions were inappropriate and caused me significant discomfort, though I lacked the capacity to process and comprehensively fathom the nature and rationale behind them.
“It was only in the past year, when I engaged in a discussion with a university psychologist, that I gained the necessary clarity to realise the gravity of the situation and fully recognise the implications of his behaviour.
“David Cosgrove was expected to assume the role of a paternal figure, creating an environment in which I should have felt secure and at ease.
“However, as a consequence of his actions, I have been left to grapple with the enduring consequences of his behaviour for the entirety of my life.
“I was a child who was taken advantage of by the one man who was expected to keep me safe.
“This distressing experience has necessitated professional counselling and generated an enduring and unescapable struggle with matters of intimacy across all aspects of my life.
“I am speaking about this as I want to ensure the safety of other young women.
“I want to empower anyone out there who may be in a similar situation to speak out sooner than I did or seek the help they need.”
Cosgrove, now of Lawrie Terrace, Loanhead, admitted the offence of voyeurism under the Sexual Offences (Scotland) Act.
Sheriff Francis Gill said, “This caused a great deal of distress which is ongoing.”
He imposed a community payback order with 165 hours of unpaid work and a three-year non-harassment order.
He was placed on the Sex Offenders Register for five years.