Pick the non sequitur

Sydney Morning Herald 29 May 2009

An abattoir worker has been jailed for eight years for raping his 14-year-old stepdaughter and then blaming his crime on her wearing short skirts around the house.

The man, who cannot be named as it would identify his young victim, tried to seduce the teenager before raping her between August and November 2007 when her mother was asleep in another room. …

Judge Leanne Clare SC said the man had left the girl “profoundly traumatised.”

She said the girl said in a victim impact statement she began cutting herself after the rape as she was “overwhelmed with self-loathing.”

“She has flirted with the thought of suicide, has had counselling for two years … (this was) a terrible breach of betrayal of trust,” she said.

“You made various attempts to seduce her, you ignored her plea for you to stop, you blamed her, accusing her of flirting and leading you on.”

She jailed him for eight years and ordered he be eligible for release on parole after 29 January 2011.

About Ken Parish

Ken Parish is a legal academic, with research areas in public law (constitutional and administrative law), civil procedure and teaching & learning theory and practice. He has been a legal academic for almost 20 years. Before that he ran a legal practice in Darwin for 15 years and was a Member of the NT Legislative Assembly for almost 4 years in the early 1990s.
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David Coles
David Coles(@david-coles)
12 years ago

Even so, presuming he was remanded in custody not long after the offences, ~3 years served of an 8 year sentence seems a bit off. I thought parole only kicked in at 50% to 66% of the sentence. Which reminds me, could anyone explain the WA “truth in sentencing” laws, or what the Libs plan to do to them?

12 years ago

I am always disturbed by these instances; if it to be believed the account indicated that the stepfather has gained her implicit trust

“He said she used to snuggle up to him and sit on his lap and that she had once … exposed her naked body to him,”

and he had taken advantage of that trust…

…meantime the mother (presumably sleeping it off) left her charge to innocently excite a randy man.

The child was left to bear the consequences and even when the adult was caught she could only be offered excuses.

John Morhall
John Morhall
12 years ago

James, re WA’s “truth in sentencing” laws, you might try reading a recent Court of Appeal judgement: “THE STATE OF WESTERN AUSTRALIA -v- BLM [2009] WASCA 88 (20 May 2009)”. It’s available on Austlii. Particularly the short dissenting judgement of Hon Geoffrey Miller. Essentially, the Court of Appeal can’t explain the laws either!