Coldstream Guards soldier, 27, weeps in dock as he narrowly avoids jail for grabbing 17-year-old recruit’s genitals while shouting ‘get your c**k out’ at whiskey-fuelled battalion party
Guardsman John Mills, 27, downed a bottle of Jack Daniels before screaming at the 17-year-old – who had only joined the famous Coldstream Guards that day – to expose himself.
Bulford Military Court heard the young recruit wanted to ‘fit in’ so did show the group of about a dozen soldiers his privates, before Guardsman Mills ‘took it too far’ and thrust his hand down the teenager’s pants.
Mr Mills was even later seen wielding a wooden sex toy and telling soldiers to perform sex acts on themselves with it.
He was serving in the 1st Battalion Coldstream Guards, the oldest continuously serving regiment which is famed for its high-profile ceremonial duties involving the royal family.
The Coldstream Guards can be recognised by their iconic red tunics and bearskin caps as they stand guard outside Buckingham Palace and Windsor Castle.
At Bulford Military Court, Wiltshire, Mills, who is not married, was sentenced for one charge of disgraceful conduct of a cruel or indecent kind.
He wept as he narrowly avoided jail with a four month prison sentence, suspended for two years.
British Army Guardsman John Mills, 27 (pictured outside Bulford Military Court), has narrowly avoided jail after grabbing a teenage recruit’s privates while shouting ‘get your c**k out’ at a whiskey-fuelled battalion party
It was not classed as a sexual assault by the Service Prosecuting Authority as Gdsm Mills’ actions were not deemed to be sexually motivated.
Major Jon Griffiths, prosecuting, told the court: ‘This didn’t involve sexual activity but it was indecent, disgraceful and fuelled in a large way by alcohol.
‘[The victim] had recently joined the battalion and it was his first day living in the accommodation block.
‘He was in his room and was aware of a block party in the room across the corridor. He was invited to join, where a group of soldiers were drinking alcohol.
‘As he walked into that room there were high spirits and drunken behaviour. A number of people cheered and shouted ‘get your c**k out’ and ‘show us your c**k’.
‘He was new, he didn’t necessarily feel comfortable but in an effort to fit in he exposed his penis, as did other members of the battalion.’
Major Griffiths added: ‘There was a sense of camaraderie, he was offered a Carling beer.
‘At that point Gdsm Mills started shouting at him and pushed him into his face and was shouting ‘show me your c**k’ and ‘get your c**k out’ several times.
Bulford Military Court (pictured) heard the young recruit wanted to ‘fit in’ so did show the group of about a dozen soldiers his privates, before Guardsman Mills ‘took it too far’ and thrust his hand down the teenager’s pants. Mr Mills was even later seen wielding a wooden sex toy and telling soldiers to perform sex acts on themselves with it
He explained that the victim felt uncomfortable, and it was at this point that Gdsm Mills ‘forcibly placed his hands’ inside the 17-year-old’s underwear to grab his genitals for ’10 to 15 seconds’.
‘Gdsm Mills tried to unzip his trousers and at that point he backed off,’ Major Griffiths continued.
‘[The victim] stayed there because he didn’t want to seem like someone who was awkward and he wanted to try and fit in.
‘In the next few moments Gdsm Mills produced a wooden dildo and encouraged other members of the unit to insert it in their anus.’
Major Griffiths said Gdsm Mills was removed from the unit when the victim reported the incident and did not return before he was discharged in October 2021.
The court heard Gdsm Mills told military police he had been ‘blind drunk’ after drinking an entire bottle of Jack Daniels whiskey.
Chris Cannon, defending, said: ‘Any individual entering that room was shouted at ‘get your c**k out’ or something similar. Nothing came of anybody that refused, they were simply allowed to come to the party and drink.
‘This was a situation where Gdsm Mills abused his position as not only being older but also more experienced than [the victim] and he obviously just bowed to peer pressure.
‘He is sorry for what happened that night, it’s not something he’s proud of.
‘He would say he is a larger than life character, the life and soul of a party. But clearly he is also the one who goes and takes things a little too far, particularly when he’s had a bit too much to drink.
‘He’s a tax paying civilian now. It is unlikely he will repeat this behaviour as he is out of that macho environment now.’
The 27-year-old, who is not married and has no known children (pictured, Guardsman John Mills), was sentenced for one charge of disgraceful conduct of a cruel or indecent kind. He wept as he narrowly avoided jail with a four month prison sentence, suspended for two years
Judge Advocate Jane England, sentencing, said: ‘This was disgusting behaviour by you. He was 17 years old. In law, that is a child. Whether you knew that or not, he was much younger and junior in rank than you.
‘This was bullying and intimidating behaviour from you while you were drunk but being drunk is no excuse.
‘This was his first day there and this is what he was met with. I don’t suppose that was the start he expected when joining the unit.
‘You can see how seriously we take these offences and how close you came to losing your liberty.
‘While you thought this was a bit of a joke and the others thought it was a joke and buffoonery behaviour, grabbing someone’s genitals when they don’t want you to is a serious offence.’
Gdsm Mills, formerly of the 1 Coldstream Guards, was also ordered to carry out rehabilitation requirements of an alcohol abstinence monitoring programme and a programme for sex offenders.