It’s every parents’ nightmare. A child walking to school one morning when approached by a stranger in a car who manages to lure the child into the car before committing an act of sexual touching, or worse.
That’s what allegedly occurred to a 12-year-old girl last Thursday morning at about 8am when the Sydney south west school girl was walking to school.
While the girl was walking to school, she was approached by a man driving a 4-wheel drive on Fairview Rd, Cabramatta.
After talking to the girl, the stranger allegedly told her to get in the car- which she did.
Once the girl entered the car, the man allegedly began to sexually touch her.
The girl managed to get away before telling police of her ordeal.
The man is yet to be identified and police are continuing their investigation.
He has been described as a dark olive complexion, dark straight hair that is cut into a fade who was aged about 30, and wore black jeans, black T-shirt, sunglasses and drove a Toyota RAV (silver or grey colour).
The police are asking for members of the public to assist if they know any information that could help find the perpetrator.
Police are particularly interested in motorists who were around the area at the time with dashcam footage.
Sexual touching is outlined in section 61HB Crimes Act 1900 (NSW) which defines it as when a reasonable hypothetical person would regard the conduct (alleged touching) as sexual where the touching involves one person touching another person.
Sexual touching was previously known as indecent assault in NSW.
Section 61KC Crimes Act 1900 (NSW) prescribes a penalty of up to 5-years imprisonment for sexual touching in NSW Courts.
Where the offence is dealt with in the Local Court, which it normally is, the maximum penalty that the Local Court can impose is 2-year imprisonment.
For more details on sexual touching laws in NSW, contact a Sydney criminal lawyer to arrange a free consult today.
Where the sexual touching involves a victim who is a child, the law sets higher maximum penalties.
If the victim is a child 10-16-years-of-age, the maximum sentence is 10-years jail (section 66DB Crimes Act 1900 (NSW)).
If the victim is a child less than 10-years-of-age, the maximum sentence is 16-years jail (section 66DA Crimes Act 1900 (NSW)).
There are two types of imprisonment penalties, Full-Time Imprisonment and Intensive Correction Order (ICO). The ICO is considered jail, but it is an alternative to Full time jail which allows the offender to remain in the community (not in custody) with conditions.
An offender who commits sexual touching where the victim is a child aged less than 16, the ICO option is unavailable for a court to impose. This would mean, that if a court is considering a jail type of sentence, there will normally be no option other than Full time jail to impose on the particular offender.
To be guilty of sexual touching, the law requires the prosecution to prove each of the following elements beyond reasonable doubt:
- There was intentional touching on the alleged victim by an accused person.
- The alleged touching is considered by a hypothetical reasonable person to be sexual.
- Consent was not provided by the alleged victim.
- The accused person was aware of the absence of consent.
Unless a defence to sexual touching charges apply, or the prosecution are unable to prove each of the above 4 elements in court, an accused person will be found guilty by a NSW Court if each of the above elements are proven in court by the prosecution.