Policeofficers attend opening of the 2014 Law Year
Policeofficers attend opening of the 2014 Law Year

A forty-five year old man of a north eastern community is now serving 10 years less remand time at the Stock Farm State Prison for unlawful sexual intercourse with a young girl who was14 years old in 2012.

The man pleaded guilty to the offence of unlawful sexual intercourse at his arraignment in April 2, 2015. The second charge of indecent assault was withdrawn by the office of the Director of Public Prosecutions.

According to the evidence presented in the case, the man and the mother of the girl had a relationship which lasted many years. The girl continued to be on speaking terms with the man after the relationship with her mother ended. She saw him regularly and spoke with him because they lived in the same community. He lived with his girlfriend and baby.

Sometime in 2012 the girl was on her way home from school when she came across the man close to his home. He casually told her to come check him after she had changed from her school uniform and eaten something. She understood him to mean his entire family when he asked her to check him. She got to the man's home, saw no one outside and went in. The man was sitting on his bed dressed in a pair of red boxer shorts. She asked about his girlfriend but he did not answer. He just walked past her and closed the door. The virtual complainant again asked him for his girlfriend and he told her she was not there. He turned up the volume to his music during that time. The girl turned and started walking towards the door. The prisoner held her by the arms and lifted her from the floor. She began screaming and fighting with him to let her go. He paid no heed.

He carried her to his bedroom and placed her on his bed. He pinned her to the bed using one hand to pull down her jeans and under wear and had intercourse with her.

He next turned to a case near his bed, took a knife from it and pointed the knife at her saying that if she told anybody he would kill her.

She put on her clothes and ran from his house to her home and immediately took a bath. She noticed bloodstains in her underwear. In fear for her life she told no one what had happened.

The virtual complainant was on her way from an errand sometime after that assault when she again saw the prisoner outside his home. He looked at her with what she described "as terrifying eyes" which frightened her. She became scared and began crying. She then went to the home of a police officer who is a neighbour. She was still crying but would say nothing because of the fear for her life. The officer noticing her distress urged her to speak to him. Eventually she took courage and told him what the man had done to her. The police officer prevailed on her to tell her mother but she would not because of the threat hanging over her.

At a later occasion the mother of the complainant went visiting her neighbours, the police officer and his wife. There the officer told her what her daughter had told him. Her daughter confirmed what the officer told her and she went and made a report at the local police station on February 2, 2013. The girl and her mother met the investigating officer on March 5, 2013, and that same day the girl was examined by a doctor.

The police organised a confrontation between the virtual complainant and the prisoner on April 29, 2013. The man denied the accusation.

Judge Errol Thomas was unhappy given the grossly outweighing aggravating factors and in the end was of a mind to impose a 15-year prison sentence. But the fact of the guilty plea which seemed to be the only mitigating factor provided for a reduced sentence by one-third.

The judge sentenced the prisoner to 10 years in prison