A GYMPIE man who indecently and violently abused his eleven-year-old stepdaughter over a period of more than a year - with cover-up support from the girl's mother - could be out of jail before Christmas.
District Court Judge Leanne Clare yesterday indicated her understanding of people who would be dissatisfied with the penalty.
"Sentences must be proportionate and cannot be inflated by matters which would be upsetting to all right thinking people," she said.
She described the offences as "twisted" and "sadistic" and said the girl had tried to escape but had been let down by those who should have been protecting her, including her mother and even the police.
She rejected defence submissions that the girl "could be unruly and occasionally violent towards her mother" and had been diagnosed with "social oppositional disorder."
"A disorder like that would not be a surprising result of that sort of experience," the judge said.
The man, described in a psychiatric report as over-sensitive, appeared to wipe a tear from his eye as he was led from the court to serve a 30-month sentence, with parole possible from December 23, allowing for time served in pre-sentence custody.
He had pleaded guilty to charges of indecently treating the girl and three of her friends by trying to compel them to watch a pornographic video between January 1, 2012 and October 16, 2013.
That was followed by months of abuse, including being tied and whipped with an extension cord and beaten with a Coke bottle.
Judge Clare said what had been planned as a fun sleepover night had been ruined when the man, who cannot be named because it would identify his victim, came down the stairs in his underpants and tried to make them watch a pornographic video on his computer.
He also pleaded guilty to assaulting the girl and depriving her of her liberty on multiple occasions, as well as threatening adult witnesses who had supported the girl in 2015.
"Once she ran away to the police station. On another occasion a neighbour called the police. She was allowed to stay with them, even though police had seen the bruises on her wrists (from being tied up). The mother had lied to cover up the abuse, the court was told.
"You tied her like an animal to a towel rack, with a bowl of water and told her she would not be fed for three days.
"You whipped her and beat her and joked about how easy it was to mark her body. She was angry and upset at her mother and felt betrayed. She had good cause to be angry. She is still traumatised," the judge said.
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