Alleged kidnapper and rapist of 11-year-old schoolgirl pleads guilty to one of 10 charges

Updated

May 13, 2019 16:33:43

A man who had already admitted to kidnapping an 11-year-old Newcastle schoolgirl, has wept before pleading guilty to raping her, during a five-hour ordeal.

Key points:

  • Brett David Hill, 48, has pleaded guilty to one count of having sexual intercourse with an 11-year-old school girl without her consent, in circumstances of aggravation as well as to possessing child abuse material
  • But he pleaded not guilty to another four identical charges, as well as two counts of indecent assault, using scissors as an offensive weapon, and attempting to have sex with the girl without her consent
  • Under a new initiative aimed at assisting child victims, the girl gave evidence in court ahead of a trial

Brett David Hill, 48, wiped away tears as he began entering pleas to 10 charges in the Newcastle District Court.

It related to the abduction and the alleged repeated sexual assault of the girl in bushland, as she walked to school, in Newcastle in June 2018.

Hill had already pleaded guilty to four charges, including aggravated detaining a person for advantage and three counts of aggravated sexual assault.

The District Court proceedings were halted briefly as Hill was confused.

“I am unsure of what is happening because everything has changed,” Hill told the court.

He then pleaded guilty to one count of having sexual intercourse with the 11 year old without her consent, in circumstances of aggravation.

But he pleaded not guilty to another four identical charges.

He also pleaded not guilty to two counts of indecent assault, using scissors as an offensive weapon, as well as not guilty to attempting to have sex with the girl without her consent.

Hill has now pleaded guilty to possessing child abuse material in relation to that allegation.

At the time he was charged, police also alleged Hill filmed some of the assaults before the girl was released at Kotara railway station.

Hill will stand trial on a further eight offences, that he pleaded not guilty to in October.

School girl allowed to give evidence ahead of trial

Under a new initiative aimed at assisting child victims of sexual offences engaged with the criminal justice system, the girl gave evidence in court ahead of a trial.

It involved use of pre-recorded evidence, namely an interview conducted by the police within the Joint Investigation Response Team.

The media was excluded from the closed court proceedings that followed, but Hill’s legal team said cross examination could take two hours or more.

The girl was described in court as being strong and calm, ahead of giving evidence via audio visual link.

She had what is known as a Children’s Champion or Witness Intermediary physically present in court.

Such intermediaries are accredited professionals from four primary disciplines; Speech Pathology, Social Work, Psychology and Occupational Therapy.

The new system is aimed at reducing the stress and trauma experienced by children and vulnerable young persons who are victims and witnesses in sexual offence matters.

Topics:

crime,

child-abuse,

law-crime-and-justice,

courts-and-trials,

newcastle-2300

First posted

May 13, 2019 15:31:01

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