The then 42-year-old kissed and inappropriately touched the young girl after giving her alcohol. File photo
The then 42-year-old kissed and inappropriately touched the young girl after giving her alcohol. File photo

‘Can I kiss you when you’re older?’: Creep touches 15yo

A GYMPIE region man who pleaded guilty to kissing and inappropriately touching a 15-year-old girl after giving her alcohol will have the threat of jail time hanging over his head for the next two years.

In December 2018, Brad William Mitchell was watching the 15-year-old girl and her older brother while their parents and sister were out.

Mitchell was asked to look in on the teenagers while they were home alone, but instead, he gave the them alcohol and drank with them, then later assaulted the girl in her own bed.

In July this year, Mitchell, 44, pleaded guilty in the Gympie District Court to two counts of indecently dealing with a child under 16.

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He returned to the court this week for sentencing and also pleaded guilty to a further five summary charges; four breaches of bail conditions and one count of supplying alcohol to a minor while not being a responsible adult for the minor.

This week the court heard Mitchell gave the teenagers cider, and danced with them; the victim's brother remembered seeing him putting his arm around his sister's neck and used his other hand to pat her on the head.

Around 11pm, while dancing with her, Mitchell whispered in her ear, asking if he could kiss her when she was older, and briefly placed his hands on her breasts, over her shirt.

When the girl's parents and younger sister returned home, her dad saw her lying back on the couch, with Mitchell positioned between her knees, and saw him lean over and put his face near hers.

Later that night, he took the girl to her bedroom, which she shared with her sister, and put her to bed.

She rolled out of bed, so Mitchell picked her up, and put her back and then kissed her on the lips, and touched her bottom over her clothes, which was witnessed by her sister.

After he left, the 15-year-old recorded a complaint of the assault on her phone and gave it to her sister, telling her to show their mother.

She then opened the bedroom window and ran away to a friend's house, where she was later found and taken to the police station.

A breath test revealed the girl had a blood alcohol concentration of 0.098.

Mitchell attended the police station the next day and was charged and released on bail, with a condition that he report daily to an officer in charge.

Between June and November 2019, Mitchell breached his bail by not reporting or failing to report on time on four occasions.

Mitchell's defence lawyer said his client could offer no excuse for his behaviour, and struggled to explain why the offending happened but was remorseful.

He could only say that he was dealing with his father's illness and impending death at the time.

The court heard Mitchell had also since been prescribed antidepressants.

Mitchells' lawyer said his client's offending "was at the lowest end of the scale".

"It couldn't be much lower than that," he said.

"It was very minor offending in my submission."

The court heard Mitchell now lived in Veteran and has a nine-year-old son

Judge Gary Long told Mitchell offences dealing with indecent treatment of a child were recognised as "inherently serious."

Mr Long said it seemed Mitchell did not set out to supply alcohol to the girl in order to take advantage of her, but rather took advantage of an "opportunity" when it presented itself.

Victim impact statements provided by the victim and her mother revealed the girl felt unsafe, and was unable to trust men.

Mr Long noted the significant age difference between Mitchell, who was 42 at the time, and the girl, and he told Mitchell he had also breached the trust placed in him as someone with children in his care.

For each of the offences of indecent treatment of child under 16 that was under his care, Mitchell was sentenced to serve six months, to be suspended for two years.

On the five summary charges Mitchell was ordered to complete 150 hours of community service within a year.

Gympie Times

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