Man jailed after ‘taking advantage’ of 15-year-old child
AFTER frantically searching for her friend at a party, a witness told police she discovered her “extremely intoxicated” 15-year-old friend naked behind a shed with an unknown 39-year-old man, a court heard.
Sitting together at the gathering on May 1, 2020, the witness and the aggrieved were approached by the stranger, who spoke to the witness and proceeded to touch her leg, police prosecutor Barry Stevens said.
She punched him and left to go to the bathroom, and by the time she returned, the defendant and the aggrieved had disappeared.
After seeking help from others to find the child, a second witness located the aggrieved and the defendant behind the garden shed. She was pulling on a jumper to cover her “naked torso” and the defendant was seen “pulling his track pants from his thighs to around his waist”. Both ran off after being discovered.
According to Sgt Stevens, police and QAS paramedics were called to the address, where they observed the aggrieved to be “extremely intoxicated to the point where she was unable to speak or stand”.
When spoken to by police the next day, the victim could not recall any details about the defendant. The track pants she was wearing were lodged for forensic testing and DNA from the defendant was located in the crotch area of the pants.
Appearing via video before Murgon Court, the defendant pleaded guilty to the indecent treatment of a child under 16, in addition to five other charges.
These included contravening a domestic violence order, obstructing a police officer, possessing more than the prescribed quantity of alcohol in a restricted area, and two counts of failing to appear.
Sgt Stevens said the defendant has a “significant” criminal history, including 11 counts of domestic violence and 13 count of failing to appear in court.
In relation to the breach domestic violence order dating back to January, the defendant attended the home of his ex-partner to collect some belongings. According to Sgt Stevens he used offensive language, calling the mother of his child a “dog” and a “c-nt”.
The defendant was represented by Alan Korobacz, who said his client is “extremely remorseful for his actions that night” and he didn’t wish to do the child any harm.
“If she didn’t remember that was a good thing,” he said.
For the indecent treatment, breach of the domestic violence order, and two fail to appears, the defendant received a head sentence of 12 months imprisonment.
For obstructing a police officer and possessing liquor he was convicted and not further punished.
“You’ve pleaded guilty in circumstances where your victim can’t add very much to the circumstances surrounding what happened,” Magistrate Andrew Sinclair said.
“You’re nearly three times her age. She’s really only a few years older than your own son.”
“You should contemplate how you would feel if someone took advantage of your son in these circumstances.”
Having already served 63 days behind bars, the defendant will spend Christmas under lock and key before being released on parole in January 2021.
Convictions were recorded.