A female inmate has been attacked after fellow prisoners found out what she was inside for.
23-year-old Carolann Gallon was jailed for six years and initially, was held at Low Newton women’s prison in Durham.
Her family revealed she’s now been moved almost 150 miles away, to HMP Styal, in Cheshire, but the problems have continued with Gallon being assaulted on Sunday.
Her father, Jimmy Gallon, told the Chronicle Live:
People have found out what she’s in for and she’s getting grief. She got moved from one place to another because she was getting picked on, then she rang me saying she had been assaulted by someone in there.
She cries every time I speak to her. It’s awful for me because I feel so helpless. She’s my daughter and I just feel like there’s nothing I can do for her.
I really miss her but my hands are tied. It’s just heartbreaking for me.
Carolann was jailed after a judge heard how she provided vulnerable girls as young as 13 to a network of sex predators in Newcastle’s West End.
She was the only female locked up as part of the Operation Shelter grooming gang probe.
Gallon was one of 18 people convicted as part of Northumbria Police’s Operation Shelter, which probed the exploitation of vulnerable young women and girls in the area.
Newcastle Crown Court heard how the men would prey on vulnerable females and lure them to parties where they were plied with drugs and booze before being used for sex.
Gallon was arrested as part of the investigation and pleaded guilty to three counts of trafficking for sexual exploitation.
During her sentencing hearing, Judge Penny Moreland was told Gallon left one young woman – with learning difficulties – with a man and told her she was in safe hands – only for him to rape her when she fell into a drug and alcohol-induced sleep.
A 13-year-old girl, who was in local authority care, was found at Gallon’s home after she ran away.
The prosecution said Gallon took the teen to a home in Elswick ‘knowing or believing’ she would be sexually exploited.
Gallon, along with another man also picked the girl up from another children’s home when she was 14 and took her and another girl to various houses where parties known as ‘sessions’ were taking place.
Older men provided the girls with drink and drugs.
The court heard how the girl later told her care worker a man had sex with her against her will and afterwards Gallon had ‘mocked her’.
The victim said Gallon told her:
[your] family would be chopped to pieces [if I spoke out].
Jimmy however, maintains his daughter is as much a victim as the other girls and was also being manipulated by the men.
I have always said she needs help not punishment. They could have put her on a tag. I would have taken full responsibility for her. She could have come to live with me.
Prison is not going to help.
Gallon, from Newcastle, was the second eldest in a family of six children, while Jimmy has 17 children to four different women.
Her dad, who lost both his legs to diabetes, said she was a bright caring child, but went off the rails as a teenager, when she began drinking in the homes of older men in the West End.
She was alright as a young lass, but it was since she got in with this lot that she changed. Those men were just using her. I think they saw her as an easy target I don’t think she knew what she was doing.
She’d been in trouble before but it was just things like drunk and disorderly.
When I heard I just thought; ‘Carolann what are you doing? You are getting yourself a name and it will get you into bother – and it did. I knew it would.
I said to her; ‘have you not got something you want to do with your life?’.
I tried my best to stop it. I had been to a couple of places that she had been and I got the police a couple of times because they were giving her drink.
Former steel worker Jimmy never imagined his daughter would ever be involved in such serious crimes:
I knew she’d gone off the rails but this is the last thing you would ever expect your daughter to go to jail for.
Jimmy is now planning to move to Keighley in West Yorkshire and hopes his daughter will join him there following her release, believing it’s not too late for her to turn her life around.
She’s still my little girl. I will make sure she stays on the straight and narrow when she gets out. She wants to start a new life and she can move away with me.
If you’ve been affected by any of the issues in this story and need to talk, call the Samaritans on their free phone number, anytime, on 116 123.
A sports enthusiast with a BA (Hons) in Sports Journalism, who can be found predominantly at Villa Park. Having completed a Masters in Broadcast Journalism, she then went on to work at Sky Sports, the BBC, and the Mirror. When not engrossed in sport, it’s animals, guitars, and Liam Gallagher which take main focus.