Not much has been published in the way of recidivism of sexual assault in Australia. However, a report that continues to be relied upon is the Victorian police data study. Here, they found that 14 per cent of alleged offenders had previously been apprehended for sexual offences.
This is the theme of a case that was recently bought before the District Court of NSW, where a defendant with an extensive sexual assault history was under scrutiny for his high recidivism rates.
Background of the defendant
The defendant, who is now 45 years of age, encountered many negative aspects during his life that influenced his later behaviours. Some of the most prominent include extensive drug and alcohol abuse, a long-standing diagnosis of schizophrenia and the repeated tendency to commit sexual offences. As a result of these issues, the defendant spent much of his life incarcerated.
Interestingly, when assessing his schizophrenia, the defendant explained that he has heard voices since he was eight years old. While antipsychotic medication had been of some help, he still experienced several personalities – one he described as a dead sexual predator.
Cause for the claim
The plaintiff of the case was the government of NSW. The state sought an extended supervision order (ESO) for two years, pursuant to the Crimes (High Risk Offenders) Act 2006 (NSW).
They put forward the ESO on the back of the defendant's extensive sexual assault history and the concern that he would reoffend.
His criminal record began more than 30 years ago when he was just 14 years' old and exposed himself to a woman in a telephone booth. Whilst on bail for the offence, he exposed himself to a mother in a park.
In 2003, the defendant committed an aggravated indecent assault against a 13 year old girl. Just two years later, he committed another act of indecency against the same girl and was later sentenced for these crimes. In the years that followed to 2017, the defendant continued to perform sexual assault acts on women. He was later placed on parole and subject to an interim supervision order (ISO) which he continued to breach.
After assessing the context and evidence, the court agreed that the defendant should be placed on an extended ESO due to his high risk of reoffending. The defendant also agreed that this was the best option.
If you've been victim of sexual assault, it's important to come forward to ensure your voice is heard and justice can be served. For more information, get in touch with our team of sensitive experts at Gerard Malouf & Partners today.