News

Jail for 'brazen' sex attack of 12yo

Bundaberg Court House
Bundaberg Court House Mike Knott

A BUNDABERG retiree who sexually assaulted a 12-year-old girl who was 50 years his junior has been jailed.

Ian William Walker, who is now 64, faced Bundaberg District Court yesterday and pleaded guilty to indecently treating a child under the age of 16 who was in his care.

Prosecutor Dzenita Balic said the girl's family had known Walker and his wife, who ran a child care service, for about four years.

Ms Balic said the 12-year-old girl was being looked after by the Walkers on November 7, 2009, when the incident occurred.

“The complainant child stayed over at the prisoner's residence and went into the prisoner's bedroom to watch a Blinky Bill video,” she said.

Walker and his wife were performing various duties in the house and, while his wife was outside, Walker went into the bedroom and told the girl: “I'm going to kiss you from head to toe.”

“She sat up and he pushed her down on to the bed and lay on top of her,” Ms Balic said.

The prosecutor said Walker then started to rub his genitals against the girl through her clothes.

The defendant then rolled the girl on top of him and, despite her attempts to get away, held her down.

Ms Balic said Walker's wife heard her husband moaning in the bedroom and walked in to find him in the act with the girl.

“The prisoner's wife confronted the girl and told her this might have been all her fault,” the prosecutor said.

“The bedroom was usually out of bounds (for children) ... but the (television) facilities in the lounge room were no longer available that day.”

A victim impact statement was tendered to the court which said the incident had impacted on the girl's relationship with other males.

“This is a less serious example of indecent dealing,” Ms Balic said.

“But there was, in my submissions, still a breach of trust to the type of relationship they had.”

Ms Balic said the attack was also “brazen” given the close proximity of Walker's wife.

The prosecutor tendered three sets of criminal history from Queensland, Western Australia and South Australia and barrister Russel Byrnes said most of it was dated.

Mr Byrnes said his client suffered from a medical condition that caused him to have dizzy spells, but doctors could not identify the cause.

He also suffers from a painful shoulder injury and Mr Byrnes said the health problems would cause his client to have a harder time in jail.

“This was somewhat opportunistic,” Mr Byrnes said.

“It did not seem well thought out ... his wife was just outside.”

Judge Douglas McGill sentenced Walker to nine months jail, which will be suspended for 12 months after he has served two months in custody.

“The complainant was at your house at the time being cared for by you and your wife,” Judge McGill said.

“There was an age disparity of 50 years.”

Topics:  bundaberg child sex


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